Music streaming service Rhapsody is rebranding its U.S. operations under the name of Napster. In a press release, Rhapsody noted there will be "no changes to your playlists, favorites, albums, and artists. Same music. Same service. Same price."
Many will recognize the name of Napster as the file-sharing service that was developed by Sean Parker and single-handedly wrecked havoc throughout the music industry at the turn of the twenty-first century. The company ran into legal problems over copyright infringement and later became an online music store until Rhapsody acquired the site from Best Buy back in 2011.
Napster's last official tweet in November of 2011 notified users its music library would now be available through Rhapsody.
Since 2011, Rhapsody has been operating under the Napster name across the world, but not in the U.S. However, the company has reportedly been grappling with the immense success of its streaming competitors including Spotify's 30 million paying subscribers and Apple Music's 15 million customers, according to Variety. Reports say Rhapsody is also in the process of closing its San Francisco office.
At the tail end of 2015, reports surfaced about Napster making its return online as a subscription-based music service, but only in Canada. Napster recruited Canadians Alessia Cara and Shawn Mendes to curate personal playlists to entice people to sign up.
In a statement to Complex, Rhapsody explained what the rebranding means for subscribers going forward:
"Today, the company notified U.S. customers that Rhapsody will soon switch over to the Napster name it uses in all other non-U.S. markets, and form one global brand as Napster. The move is one of many steps we're taking to strengthen our global brand and better position the company for growth. Subscribers can keep enjoying their playlists, favorites and albums as usual, without interruption; they’ll automatically be brought in under the Napster name via auto updates in the app."