Time to check in again on one of our most beloved online services, HearThis.at.
The “would-be SoundCloud killer” as we described it in our round-up of SoundCloud alternatives has been steadily growing in 2017, according to the company’s statements and Alexa’s estimated traffic graph. A recent mailing notes HearThis now has “380,000 registered users and 2,000,000+ listeners.” These numbers are minuscule and a shadow of what SoundCloud itself claims, but the arrows are pointing in the right direction.
Apparently the growth curve isn’t sharp enough, as HearThis has also lifted play and download limits on unpaid/free user accounts. Not much excuse not to make one now (though upload limits are still in place).
HearThis has also cloned the “preview button” feature most familiar from Mixcloud. Mouseover the big red button and a short preview of the track/mix plays:
On the downside, my HearThis feed is still a hideous junkyard of shared-to-download streams. SoundCloud is not much better: I almost never see new tracks when they’re posted amidst all of the reposted streams from nice but hyperactive users. No service has yet figured out a polite way of throttling users, in which I can follow users but not follow every goddamned thing they repost in a manner similar to twitter showing @replies only if you’re following both users. (Someone please fucking do this.)
In any case, as far as paid services go, at €33/year (about $38 at current conversion rates), HearThis is still the cheapest of the SoundCloud alternatives that isn’t already free.