The popular Winamp media player and its associated website were supposed to be shut down by its owners at AOL on Friday, December 20th. That deadline has come and gone and, lo and behold, both are still up and running as of this writing.
This fact would seem to lend credence to rumors that AOL is in serious talks with a company that would in theory acquire Winamp. The thinking is that the negotiations would give the site and the software a stay of execution until the deal is finalized. So far, the only company that has been named as a possible buyer is Microsoft. For its part, AOL has been completely silent about the future of Winamp beyond the December 20th deadline notice that was posted a month ago.
On Friday, there were many people and companies on the Internet that were lamenting the planned shutdown of Winamp in blog posts, Facebook messages and Tweets. One of them was the music streaming service Spotify. The company announced the release of an unofficial Windows program called Spotiamp. The software replicates the Winamp design but lets Spotify Premium users log into their account to stream music. It also supports Winamp visualization plugins and has a built in Shoutcast server so that the music can be sent to any hardware device that supports the streaming music program.
We plan to stay on top of what looks like will be a continuing saga and will post updates if any credible news on the future of Winamp is released.
Update: We contacted one of Winamp's team members, Eddy Richman, via Twitter to ask if the December 20th shutdown deadline was no longer valid and received this response: