When South Korean startup HumOn was a winner in 2017’s Midemlab startups contest, its focus was a consumer app that let people hum into their smartphone, then turned it into a proper song for them. Now the company appears to be refining its pitch as more of a B2B product aimed at online-video creators looking for copyright-free music.
Witness the description of the company – whose official name is Cooljamm – on its profile on investment site AngelList. “We has developed a set of AI platforms which can, first, ‘learn’ the key melody from any piece of music, and then second, ‘compose’ a new track based on the same melody but customised with style, rhythm, pacing, instruments, etc,” it explains.
“Our product will be sold to power-users who upload hours of videos online every week; these video producers can use this tool to generate accompanying music tracks – without any copyright issues!”
This isn’t a surprising pivot: in the company’s Midemlab pitch, which we reported on last June, CEO David Choi explained that one planned element of the company’s business model would be for users to “purchase the copyright on a track made by HumOn so they can use them commercially for background music on a video or a game”.
This brings HumOn more into the territory of startups like Jukedeck and Amper Music, who’ve been offering their AI-composition tech to creators, but also to production-music libraries like Epidemic Sound and Audio Network, who see online-video creators as a growing customer base.