Michael Robertson's Uberstations to challenge TuneIn, iHeartRadio

Michael Robertson's Uberstations to challenge TuneIn, iHeartRadio
Michael Robertson, who sold MP3.com in 2001, has a new venture in Internet radio. (MichaelRobertson.com)

Former MP3.com Chief Executive Michael Robertson has entered the ever-growing online music streaming industry.

Uberstations, which launched Thursday, aggregates streams of traditional radio stations, which users can listen to from the site for free.

Uberstations shows users what songs and talk shows are playing in whatever ZIP code or area code they choose. When users pick a station to play, Uberstations suggests other stations playing similar streams.

Robertson, 46, said Uberstations, which has nine employees, combines elements of Pandora and TuneIn. 

"We think this is a real advance in online radio experience," he said in an interview. "We play all the stations in one beautiful Web experience, and we're tracking real-time what's playing on thousands of stations."

Uberstations, which Robertson is funding himself, tracks about 14,000 stations, mostly in the United States.

TuneIn says on its website that it streams about 70,000 stations and has 40 million monthly active users worldwide -- and has surpassed 1 billion listening hours as of April this year.

Streaming music online is becoming an increasingly crowded space, with Apple Inc. recently launching its iTunes Radio to take on Pandora. Other major players include Rdio, MOG and Clear Channel's iHeartRadio.

Robertson sold MP3.com in 2001 to Vivendi, which later sold it to CNET. Not long after a successful IPO in 1999, the company struggled with copyright-infringement lawsuits.


Twitter: @rfaughnder