Qualcomm AllPlay is refreshing its existing product with a commercial rollout, the company announced at CES. Several new music partners, including SoundCloud and Tidal, will be supported on the wireless streaming service, joining iHeartRadio, Rhapsody/Napster, and SomaFM. Engadget reported that China’s QQ Music and Korea’s KT Music are also expected to join the AllPlay network of supported audio sources. Qualcomm also announced hardware support from brands such as Panasonic and Altec Lansing.
AllPlay is a universal audio streaming service that allows listeners to stream local and cloud content from a range of sources to a range of hardware. This means that at-home listeners no longer need to focus on keeping all of their listening products within a single brand’s ecosphere. For instance, Apple’s AirPlay has a similar function for wireless media streaming, but it only works on Apple devices.
AllPlay is part of an open-source consortium called the AllSeen Alliance. The mission of AllPlay is to reduce branded silos which limit how consumers choose home equipment. Worth noting, though, that to make AllPlay work, you need Qualcomm hardware in the house. given that, the user gains freedom to choose WiFi speakers and audio sources from an expanding range of hardware builders and audio publishers that have made their products AllPlay-compatible.