I only discovered Roon about 10 days ago when researching a replacement for my recently broken audio system because what has now become my choice for my replacement system (due for delivery tomorrow - excited!), a pair of KEF LS50 Wireless active speakers, advertised compatibility with something called “Roon”.
With help from this forum I’m now feeling well prepared to activate my trial tomorrow (as soon as my LS50w-s arrive) but, when considering adopting some piece of software that I will be using frequently especially since in this case I will probably end up buying a lifetime license if the trial goes well, I do quite like to know at least something about the company behind it. I have found bits of information here and there but personally I would have quite liked a couple of things to make getting to know the company a bit easier…
1 - The roonlabs.com web site has no “About Us” section. It does have a “Contact Us” section which on some web sites is where a paragraph or two of about-us info sometimes resides but on the Roon Labs there is nothing there either.
2 - I was surprised to see no Wikipedia entry. Perhaps Wikipedia has too many hurdles to jump such as proving company revenue etc to make it easy/practical for companies to get an entry but Qobuz for instance has one (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Qobuz).
Please don’t take this the wrong way. It is definitely meant in the spirit of friendly, hopefully constructive, and at most extremely mild criticism (I realise you have a million other things that demand your attention). I have personally had a very friendly welcome here and found this forum very useful as I have flailed around trying to build my understanding of Roon prior to starting my trial, but at least for this newcomer encountering the Roon universe for the first time an easily-found paragraph or two about the company covering where you are based, how long you have been in business, whatever the founders are happy to share about their background (if anything) and what ever other bits and pieces and pieces of company info were deemed useful and appropriate to share would have been nice to have and helpful in creating the feeling of a deeper connection with the company behind the software.
Roon developed out of the Meridian Sooloos team when that business was spun off. I used to use Sooloos and so joined Roon as a lifetime user in the early days as a natural progression.
The Roonies say a little bit more about themselves in their blog; for example in the first entry.
Roon is a privately held company and self funded. So they answer to themselves, rather than VC vultures. IMO, that’s a good thing, as long as they have the funds to keep things running. The upfront added cost of a lifetime membership helps them over the short term when capital is so critical. Over the long haul, the annual subscribers will pay the bills.
Many of the principal officers will pop up on the forum from time to time to clear up various aspects of how Roon works and what they are working on. They tend not to toot their own horns (which is good) and have some fairly firmly held views of how Roon should work. I don’t have a problem with any of that.
OTOH, this Forum will express dismay with how things are, features that are missing, and a lack of overt transparency. That’s healthy, and from what I can tell Roon pays attention, even if they don’t respond directly.
There are now more than 100,000 users and the base is growing in a healthy way (according to Roon). My biggest concern when I got a lifetime membership was whether or not Tidal was going to be viable, since streaming is such an important part of the Roon experience for me. I still don’t know if Tidal will be viable over the long haul, but now Qobuz also offers streaming, so there is a fallback option.
Interesting stuff. Thanks all.
If Roon has a marketing department/person, and I realise they might not because they prefer to concentrate on development, then for the sake of an hour or so of work I still think it wouldn’t be a bad idea to create half a screen or so of text from those various sources and add an “About Us” section to the main web site.
I’m guessing from the first blog post that Roon is New York (City?) based.
Roon is pretty extensively globally distributed. There are now 18 people listed in The Team, under Settings/About. Some are, or at least were, located in New York, Midwest, West Coast, Thailand, Ukraine, France, and UK. I don’t believe the original Roon devs have still ever all met together physically in the same room at the same time.
The greatest concentration of Roon staff are, however, in NYC I believe.
I started at Roon in July 2016. The first time I met anyone from Roon in person was at the Qobuz US launch party in February of this year.
I’d be careful what you wish for. Apple is a company that talks about itself far too much to the upwards of 1 billion beta-testers for each of their flaky software updates.