I don’t think consumers are the folks that Roon are marketing to. They hired a VP of marketing in June from Kef. My guess is his role is marketing to the industry. Partners. In which case we are part of the product rather than being the customer (“we have X subscribers…”). Marketing and UX are less active on the forums it seems too.
As for the website - I can’t find any mention of Nucleus. It doesn’t look like it’s been updated since 2015.
Not a rant. Just agreeing with your observations. I think Roon are on a different path and that’s fair enough. It’s their business and their perogative.
(The truth is out there but not necessarily here)
That’s an interesting idea. I sure hope not, but it could explain a focus on “other than” UX functions and features, since that stuff is power user stuff, not mainstream stuff, and hardware integration seems the focus.
You may be right. But to get X to the tenth power subscribers, you need more than what you did yesterday, or in this case 2015. Put it another way, once you maximize a certain layer of subscriber, then next layer down is harder to draw in. You have to be even more on your game. I’m sure Roon has got about all the high-end audiophiles with mega-buck systems they’re going to get. How are you doing to get the slightly above average Joe who got his system from Crutchfield or Amazon to buy Roon? That’s going to be tougher and if you’re not willing to crack that, then you’ll get a trickle of business from the gravy farm.
This too is not a rant, and it is Roon’s prerogative. It will be interesting to look at this in five or ten years and see how it all evolves.
So far as I know Roon doesn’t charge industry partners, meaning users are the sole substantive source of revenue. I expect Roon does try to attract industry partners by referring to the number of users, but I don’t think that makes us the product.
I certainly feel like a customer and would encourage other users to act like customers. Telling Roon what you want is important, but not determinative.
(now wearing snowshoes on my asymmetrical isolation feet)
I don’t think they do charge hardware partners. I think (all conjecture) that hardware partners are part of the product too.
Bundle it all up and it does become pretty appealing to someone who has the missing piece - the content. You go from being a streaming service battling to differentiate yourself (and make ends meet) to being able to change your business.
All speculation. But I don’t see the marketing effort being directed to revamping the website or rejuvenating social engagement. Ironically the website shows a dated UI and an album inlay to contrast them as justification for Roon but the website looks, well, like a dated UI. Not that I wished that Roon would dedicate resource to a website over building product, but it doesn’t seem to be a focus for them and I question why.
We wait and see. I’m interested to see how it all plays out.
I personally believe that the tide is turning in favour of UX now with the development, and that Roon followed a clever developmental strategy to get hardware partners on board to passively market Roon as part of product tie-ins.
Now that the latest update was UX based, I’m optimistic that there will be more to come.
Roll on a great Qobuz-in-the-USA+Roon launch followed up with some great mobile solutions, that’s what my barometer is telling me - the future is bright
If Roon and Qobuz get the integration right it could be close to a game changer. I’m thinking of the integration of the PDF booklets that Qobuz has and their curated editorial content. It would certainly help the UX case (I know PDF is supported today, but not from a streaming provider). Hopefully PDF can be integrated directly into the UI rather than a separate interface.
Yep i reckon. Actually Im experimenting with more flexible cloud solutions at the moment, involving Dropbox, Onedrive, Cloudplayer, Chromecast and Qobuz for stuff I don’t have on HDD, along with a host of Android devices… I’d love to see Roon adopting cloud streaming, a proper portable solution AND Qobuz. The Streaming from Onedrive and Dropbox is rock solid.
Interesting. I’ve been toying with trying to find a small x64 computer that could run Roon core. Tether it to my phone and tether my chord poly to the phone and see if I can get Roon on the go that way. Not exactly mobile but means in the office I can use Roon without connecting to the work network.
Thanks for the motivation. I’ve got a Dell XPS13 running Linux and a Pixelbook. Took a look at the HP and it’s similar to the pixelbook so I’ve installed Gallium on it, and Roon Server. Works a charm. Can dual boot between ChromeOS and Gallium. That’s the mobile Roon sorted then
Sure, but then how does the average person even learn about Roon, and then decide to purchase something they perceive as free from Apple Music or Spotify? There’s a learning curve for the slightly above average Joe, and that is part of the difficulty when you try to work down past the first layer of die-hard audiophiles. It is a whole host of issues and marketing conundrums to work through.
(now wearing snowshoes on my asymmetrical isolation feet)
I dunno. Sometimes I think Roon Labs is just a gang of audio-heads who got together to build their dream system, and are selling it to the rest of us to generate cash flow.
Sometimes I think it’s a massive B2B play – maybe there’s a different Web site somewhere targeting other audio companies, saying, “We’re what Windows was to PCs!”, and the various RAAT/Sonos/Airplay/Chromecast/KEF50W protocols are just what device drivers were to Windows.
Sometimes I think it’s a pure acquisition play.
Sometimes I think it’s a research project – all the exposure of the various configuration and networking issues are to collect data so that they can then build a Nucleus 2 (perhaps with a more interesting name, like Maestro or something) which will deal with them all automagically and just Roonalize your LAN if you plug it in.
Having a magic box seems to be the way of the world in the audiophile domain. Something that improves the SQ (UX-Q?) when you add it to your stack. And costs a lot so that you can feel you made a difference by buying it . But there still are all these practical issues with networking and devices that have to be dealt with.
Man, can I come over with my Master Pressing of Dark Side of the Moon and have some of what you’re smoking? I mean, WOW! We could talk for hours on all kinds of shi*. That would be totally awesome! :-)
Obviously it includes existing features working as intended. That is very much the ambit of Support. There have been and will continue to be bugs, most of them get caught in testing, but those that affect only a small proportion of the user base can slip through and have to be identified, replicated and squashed.
At the moment Support also helps people identify and resolve network issues which cause iissues with Roon. I think the devs recognized and accepted early on that a client/server model necessitated network support. Not every software company does that.
As to the future, I regard myself as having paid for the Roon devs vision. I think they have compellingly demonstrated their intention to continue developing the product (See the Software Release notes for a chronology of added features). I may not agree with them about everything or about the priority of different projects, but ultimately I expect to prefer their version of Roon to mine.
I thought the Play button interface was a good example of that. The devs listened to everything we asked for and gave us something I don’t think anyone explicitly suggested. But it catered to most (if not all) use cases. Certainly the frequency of user dissatisfaction with the Play interface on the Forum has dropped right away.
So I believe threads like this one and the Feature Request category are important and should play a part in the future development of Roon. But if the future design of Roon was left up to the User Community, I fear it would end up like the camel - a horse designed by a committee.