UMG/Republic Launches Boombox on Roblox — But It Won’t Count on Billboard’s Charts, After All

UMG boombox Roblox
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UMG boombox Roblox
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Photo Credit: UMG / Boombox

Universal Music Group and Republic Records have just launched Boombox, ‘the first scaled music product’ across the Roblox platform, starting with the launch of K-pop sensation Twice’s ‘Twice Square’ experience. Unfortunately, none of this will count towards Billboard’s charts, according to Luminate.

Designed and powered by Styngr, the self-proclaimed gaming arm of the recorded music industry, Boombox represents a one-stop-shop for labels to dynamically launch playlists and integrate them into gaming spaces. The product of a year-long collaborative effort between UMG, Roblox, and Styngr, Boombox aims to evolve the way that superfans engage with their favorite artists while encouraging gaming fans to discover new music.

Boombox will initially launch within Republic Records’ Twice Square, a metaverse experience within Roblox designed around K-pop girl band Twice. Offering a “distinctive social multiplier effect in the gaming environment,” players can share and enjoy music together, with each instance of music playback being a monetizable event for the contributing labels and artists with Billboard-eligible play events through Styngr’s Luminate integration.

Update: Shortly after publication of this story, Luminate emailed Digital Music News with the following statement: “Due to an unfortunate miscommunication, the information regarding the data referred to in this announcement’s eligibility for the Billboard Charts is false. It will not count towards the Charts at this time.”

While Twice Square is the first to adopt Boombox, the companies’ strategy includes a phased rollout across 3,500 engaging experiences across the Roblox platform within the year, using Super League’s developer tools.

“By integrating Boombox, UMG solidifies its position as a vanguard of music innovation within the gaming sector. This integration not only enhances superfan experiences on the platform but does so with an extensive array of fully licensed music from UMG’s global roster of artists and labels, setting a new standard for how music can be integrated into the platform for the entire sector,” said Alvaro G. Velilla, Senior Vice President of New Business at UMG.

“As we continue to build creative marketing and innovative concepts for our artists, it’s important to identify fan connections and elevate their experiences with new technologies. This Boombox partnership was a logical next step in helping fans discover the music they love, all the while ensuring artists are properly recognized for their art in this space,” added Tim Hrycyshyn, SVP of Digital Strategy at Republic Records.

“We’re incredibly proud of our efforts with Styngr, Roblox, and Super League, and of course Twice and our partners at JYP Entertainment, to bring this innovative technology to life.”

“Republic Records and Twice have built a wildly entertaining Roblox experience that has captured the attention of their fans. Our goal with Boombox is to expand the immersive capabilities of music within Twice Square and any experience within Roblox that wants to leverage the power of major label music,” concluded Alex Tarrand, COO of Styngr.

“Additionally, thanks to our partnership with Luminate, this will be the first time play events in gaming experiences will count towards the Billboard Charts.”

Integration with Roblox is a significant get for UMG, who is eager to embark on meaningful partnerships with platforms like Instagram Reels — direct competitors to TikTok or spaces that skew heavily with that demographic. The prospect seems to appeal greatly to UMG in the face of ongoing licensing issues with TikTok, as well as the app’s uncertain future in the US and Europe.