Napster is coming back as a streaming service

Rhapsody, the streaming service that acquired Napster in 2012, is rebranding as Napster

Napster, the infamous file-sharing platform from the late ’90s and early ’00s, is coming back as a streaming service.

Streaming service Rhapsody, which acquired Napster in 2012, has announced it is rebranding as Napster, presumably in a bid to capitalise on the platform’s enduring name recognition.

The service promises in a blog post: “No changes to your playlists, favorites, albums, and artists. Same music. Same service. Same price. 100% the music you love. Stay tuned!”

Variety reports that Rhapsody’s decision to rebrand as Napster comes as it struggles to withstand increasingly stiff competition from rival streaming services like Spotify, Apple Music and Tidal. The company has reportedly been forced to make some members of staff redundant in recent months.

In a press statement, the company said its decision to switch to the Napster name “is one of many steps we’re taking to strengthen our global brand and better position the company for growth”.

Though Napster started out as an illegal file-sharing platform, and was famously sued by both Metallica and Dr Dre, it later re-emerged as a legitimate online music store before it was acquired by Rhapsody in 2011. At its peak, the file-sharing platform had an estimated 80 million users globally.