Blog Post

Virgin Digital’s Music Service Has Teething Problems

Virgin Digital, which launched its music service earlier this week, is having some teething problems, with some major bugs etc…I downloaded the client and tried to play the radio service but was unable to. Then the company sent out this e-mail (it is crediting songs purchased for the first couple of days)…I’m pasting below (judging from the amount of problems, it seems like the client was rushed):

“For starters, it has come to our attention that some of you have had issues buying music through the service. We hope that this has not affected you personally, but just to be sure we’re going to credit everyone for every song they purchased from from us since our launch through this afternoon (the 30th of September at 4pm PST). We’ve just fixed the issue, so this shouldn’t affect anyone from now on. Just to be clear: If you bought stuff from us over the past few days and you’ve been billed for it, we will be issuing you a credit. Enjoy it, listen to it, burn it to a CD, annoy your neighbors with it, whatever.

Secondly, anyone who has previously signed up for the Digital Music Club will have their memberships extended another 14 days, ultimately receiving a full month of free service. We want to make sure that you have an adequate amount of time to experience our service while we work to continually improve it.

Next, we’ve found some other issues that we’ve fixed and added to our auto-updater. In order to update your player, just run it and let it idle for about five minutes – the updates will ‘trickle’ in. Then, close and restart the player and it will all automatically update for you. Painless. The fixes you’ll find include:

— Song-purchasing should now be working for everybody.

— Some users had trouble playing back songs from the club and store due to licensing issues. We’re pretty sure we’ve got this one licked.

— Radio streaming worked for some, not for others. Now, we’re confident it will work for everyone. Hope you like it.

— Some memory issues have been fixed. The player slowly was eating up your RAM like Pac Man on Thorazine until it reached a certain point. We think we’ve reduced it by about 35% and stopped the whole Pac Man thing. You can imagine the Pac-Man death sound now, if you like.

— We’ve updated to the latest version of Microsoft’s GDI+ for tighter security on Win2K. WinXP users are unaffected by this change as we didn’t install the component on your systems.

— A very small number of you may have received an automated message saying that your account has been closed out due to a day of inactivity. Know that the message was sent in error and that you can ignore it completely. We are planning to send a message like that after one year of inactivity and had set the time span to one day during our testing last week to make sure it worked (we didn’t want to delay our launch a year in order to test it). We forgot to reset the time window. Hope we didn’t alarm you.

We’re going to continue to give you auto-updates every few days as we find bugs/issues and fix them. There are also some new features that we’ll be adding as we go along. We’ll get them to you as soon as we can.

At least they’ve been honest and funny…