Let's be clear from the start: the two apps don't cater to the same needs, so the drama isn't quite as dramatic as it first seems. In fact, Soundhalo is a clever new concept that could add another layer to the online music industry, rather than competing with the services already out there.
Watch live music as it happens
The British start-up aims to let you "watch, download and share artist endorsed live music as it happens". And what a great idea this is.
There's no doubt that live performances bring more to your ears than studio recordings – and there's a huge appetite for live videos, as a glance across the shaky, grainy videos that pop up on YouTube in their thousands the day after a gig will prove.
More after the break...
£9.99 for a gig, 99p for a song
Gigs, such as Yorke side-project Atoms For Peace's recent London show, are available in their entirety or on a song-by-song basis in DRM-free MP4 format through Soundhalo's website or an Android app (iOS users must download first through the web app, then sync to an iOS device). Videos are in 320p or 480p and 720p HD formats.
A whole concert costs £9.99, with individual tracks available for 99p a pop. You can download not only past gigs, but also ones that are currently in progress: songs will be ready and waiting just seconds after they're performed live.
Currently Soundhalo is available for Android, iOS (through a mobile site) and desktop only, but the company is working on BlackBerry and Windows Phone versions that we're told are "coming soon".
Wouldn't it be nice if this were the beginning of the end of smartphones being wafted around at every gig?