DT Daily: Having never made a profit, Spotify goes IPO, rakes in billions

Streaming money

Streaming music service Spotify went public today, and shares debuted at about $132 a pop, giving the leading streaming service a market cap of about $23 billion. Not bad for a company that hasn’t turned a nickel in profit, ever. (Quick update: Spotify shares jumped into the $160 range as the trading day went on, pushing the market cap closer to $30 billion).

Spotify’s big debut comes as the stock market is in a decided tech downswing, but that doesn’t seem to matter much to co-founder and CEO Daniel Ek. In a blog post, Ek said the Swedish company has “never been a normal kind of company,” and that is certainly true of its stealthy “direct IPO,” which passed on bell-ringing theatrics and pretty much all the trappings of a big tech company going public.

Anyone can buy Spotify stock, you don’t need to be involved in the IPO, and Bloomberg said Tuesday at Spotify was pretty much just another day at the office. So where’s the profit going to come from? Rumors are rampant that the cash infusion will fuel Spotify’s expansion outside of just streaming music – with a possible aim at taking on Netflix, or Amazon, and even Apple and everyone else in the streaming video arena. We shall see.

Now with more Pro

We love virtual reality fun here at Digital Trends, and recently, there’s been a line in the lunch room where we’ve set up the new HTC Vive Pro VR system. DT computering sage Jayce Wagner has been missing deadlines and probably a lot of sleep as he spends ever more time in the twilight world of a long list of Steam-powered VR games and other experiences.

The HTC Vive Pro bumps up resolution to 1440 by 1600 pixels per eye, and it’s definitely a big improvement in clarity and detail inside the headset. Decent headphones are included now, but the hand controllers and room sensors aren’t included with the headset, so you’re going to be out about $1,100 total for a system that’s really ready to play.

In two years we’ll all be using it

Speaking of VR, it’s the perfect escape from your regular daily grind, right? Not so much anymore. Does your work include time spent on the web? Now you can work on the web… in VR. Mozilla, the folks that make the popular Firefox browser, have now given us “Firefox Reality,” an “in-VR” (and AR) version of the Firefox Browser. There’s even this little video about how it works.

You use a pointer from your hand controller to manipulate the browser, including scrolling and so forth, and it seems to look like a regular old browser window suspended above a grid pattern right out of a 1980s sci-fi western. Hooray, 2D web browsing in VR. Now get back to work.

We’ve got more news on our Facebook page and YouTube channel, and be sure to tune in to this week’s DT podcasts: Trends with Benefits (general tech shenanigans)  on Thursdays, and Between the Streams (movie and TV topics) every Friday.

Product Review

Nintendo’s Labo VR Kit may look silly, but it really works

During our hands-on with the Nintendo Labo VR Kit, fears of a gimmicky product from Nintendo were quickly dispelled. While not a direct competitor to Oculus or HTCs own headsets, Labo VR brings a clever, new way to experience VR that makes…
Gaming

Sony to launch State of Play videos for PlayStation 4, PlayStation VR

Sony will debut a new video program named State of Play on March 25. The first episode will focus on new PlayStation 4 and PlayStation VR games, and it remains to be seen if Sony will tease the PlayStation 5.
Computing

Oculus shows off the Rift S, plans to phase out its original VR headset

Oculus plans to phase out its flagship Rift VR headset for its newly created Rift S. The Rift S made its debut this week at the 2019 Game Developers Conference and is expected to be released in spring 2019.
Gaming

New Sony patent suggests a wireless PSVR headset could be on the way

Images and documents in the Japan Patent Office appear to suggest that Sony is planning a wireless version of the PlayStation VR headset. It isn't clear which system it will be used for.
Digital Trends Live

Digital Trends Live: Amazon Scout, Soraya Darabi, and Joey Ricard

On episode 53 of Digital Trends Live, DT's live morning show, hosts Greg Nibler and Drew Prindle discussed the latest in tech news, including Amazon's new delivery drone, CRISPR babies, and more.
Digital Trends Live

Digital Trends Live: Facebook, flying taxis, and Tesla police car

On episode 54 of Digital Trends Live, DT's live morning show, hosts Greg Nibler and Caleb Denison discussed Facebook's plan to integrate Instagram, Boeing's experimental flying taxi, and more.
Digital Trends Live

DT Live: Super Bowl hangover, crypto disaster, and an electric plane

On episode 58 of Digital Trends Live, DT's live morning show, hosts Greg Nibler and Drew Prindle examined the tech news of the day, including the 2019 Super Bowl commercials, Chip Yates' incredible electric plane, and more.
Digital Trends Live

Digital Trends Live: Facebook Messenger change, GoNation, and more

From new Facebook Messenger features to 5Ge coming to select smartphones, we discussed the latest in tech news on this episode of Digital Trends Live. We also welcomed Chaz Tanase of GoNation and Dan Ferguson of Groove Jones to the show.
Digital Trends Live

Digital Trends Live: Apple versus news industry, Alexa Skills, and the OGarden

On Episode 65 of Digital Trends Live, hosts Greg Nibler and Luke Larsen broke down the biggest new stories from the world of tech, including Apple's feud with news publishers, the OGarden, and more.
Digital Trends Live

Digital Trends Live: Amazon HQ, Guy Kawasaki, and when to buy a streaming stick

On Thursday's episode of Digital Trends Live, we discussed trending headlines like the latest news surrounding Amazon's new HQ plans to the Mars rover Opportunity. We also sat down with author and entrepreneur Guy Kawasaki to talk about his…
Digital Trends Live

Digital Trends Live: Oscar visual effects, digital distractions, and more

On episode 72 of Digital Trends Live, we discussed news including the discovery that Google's Nest Secure has a hidden microphone, and welcomed author Brian Solis to the show to talk about his latest book.
Digital Trends Live

Digital Trends Live: MWC 2019, ezCater, and an Apple streaming service

On this episode of Digital Trends Live, we sat down with John Hall of Calendar.com and Briscoe Rodgers of EzCater. We were also joined by DT's Caleb Denison to discuss how Apple is looking to revolutionize TV streaming.
Digital Trends Live

Digital Trends Live: New Twitter features, Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, and more

On episode 77 of Digital Trends Live, hosts Greg Nibler and Luke Larsen explored the biggest news stories from the world of tech, including the new Star Wars attraction, Twitter's experimental moderation tools, and more.
Digital Trends Live

Digital Trends Live: Save the Internet Act, T. rexes in VR, and more

On this episode of Digital Trends Live, we were joined by Joel Comm of Bad Crypto and Jason Horton of Ghost Town. Later in the show, we joined Jeremy Kaplan on location at the American Museum of Natural History.