Audio Cards Bring Background Streaming To Twitter Mobile

Twitter's Audio Cards will minimize themselves so music carries on while the user browses the mobile app.

Audio Cards Bring Background Streaming To Twitter Mobile

It's now easier than ever to listen to tweets: Twitter has debuted Audio Cards, which embed audio streaming in Twitter timelines on mobile devices.

Audio Cards will stream songs with a tap and will minimize themselves so users can keep browsing while the music plays. Twitter's first partner in the new initiative is SoundCloud. About an hour after the announcement, Twitter said iTunes is getting the same treatment.

Music on Twitter isn't new, but The Wall Street Journal says the ease of use is.

"Until now, streaming services such as SoundCloud and Rdio have used Twitter's player card to share audio files. But listening to the track essentially meant hitting pause on the rest of their Twitter experience until the audio file ended."

This is the latest push to get Twitter toward the engaging multimedia end of the spectrum — less text, more audiovisual interest — which outlets point out is a key aspect of growing Twitter's public brand.

"There is the potential for advertising, which is Twitter's [primary] income. Creating a user base that is keen to consume music would make Twitter a logical place where artists, publishing houses, labels and others would come to promote their music."

Twitter appears to be hoping this new service does better than Twitter #Music did. The company launched that stand-alone app in April 2013, then pulled it in March of this year after it failed to gain much traction with users. (Video via Pocketnow)

There are a few caveats to Audio Cards — SoundCloud told VentureBeat users will have to be following the account in question to listen to any streams, and it's not clear if Audio Cards will be available on third-party Twitter apps.

But the official versions are live now — just check for updates on your preferred flavor of the mobile app.