Napster partners with Five Minutes for international application development

Five Minutes was chosen as a strategic partner in developing mobile applications for the first subscription digital music service in the world, Rhapsody, which offers its services in Europe under the famous brand Napster. Rhapsody delivers unlimited access to a collection of over 20 million tracks to music enthusiasts that they can enjoy on their smartphones, tablets and computers for a monthly fee. Rhapsody took over Napster in 2011, the revolutionary service which gained its popularity back in 1999. Through Napster’s brand, Rhapsody is expanding its services in the growing and competitive music market in Europe.

In July this year Rhapsody expanded the Napster service to 15 European countries , and followed that up with deep integrations with many leading mobile carriers across Europe.   One of the main growth drivers for Rhapsody and Napster’s expansion is the rapid growth of smartphone and tablet applications market. Rhapsody found a mobile development strategic partner in Five Minutes, a successful Croatian company that specializes in mobile applications development and which steered its business to the global market. Their top engineering team has years of experience in developing demanding mobile applications and server solutions for music distribution, and have proven their experience and expertise working on numerous projects in the U.S. and the global market. With offices in Zagreb, Osijek and New York, and plans for new recruiting, Five Minutes is one of the fastest growing IT companies in Croatia.

“We are addicted to music and have been betting on digital music streaming for a long time, waiting for the days when we will have a collection of million singles at our fingertips. Now we have the opportunity to create the new generation of such software,” said Luka Abrus, Five Minutes CEO. “Through this engineering center we will open new jobs and have the opportunity to hire some of the best Croatian engineers. We are extremely glad to be able to ensure that engineers can work from Zagreb and Osijek on global projects using cutting-edge technologies and reaching millions of customers.”

Through its partnerships with Five Minutes, Rhapsody has invested in improving the platform in order to reach even more subscribers and expand to other markets. In the past seven months, ten software developers and testers from Five Minutes have joined Rhapsody’s engineering team to develop Android and iOS mobile applications, and improve the existing platform used by more than one million subscribed users.

“Five Minutes is the perfect partner for us as we continue to drive forward with the premier on-demand music service mobile application” said Brian Ringer, Rhapsody Chief Technology Officer.  “Their combination of great technical skills and passion for all things mobile and music has been the perfect addition to the growing Rhapsody engineering teams.”

Currently available in Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the UK and the Netherlands, Napster provides an extensive music collection of local and international musicians with a simple and flexible way of listening and finding music. The service is available on iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch and Android smartphones and tablets as well as PC and living room devices, with Napster’s music experts ensuring an offer of interesting playlists, prominent musicians and editorial content through a music guide that helps users discover new music.

Rhapsody International is parent company of leading streaming music services, Rhapsody and Napster. Initially launched in December 2001, Rhapsody is the original streaming music service that gives members unlimited on-demand access to more than 20 million songs, whether they’re listening on a PC, laptop, Internet connected home stereo or TV, MP3 player or mobile phone. In December 2011, Rhapsody International acquired Napster International. Rhapsody International is headquartered in Seattle, with offices across the U.S. and Europe. Rhapsody and the Rhapsody logo are registered trademarks of Rhapsody International Inc. Follow @Rhapsody on Twitter and keep up with the latest on the Rhapsody Facebook page.

Don’t see an opening but want to work with us? We’re always interested in hearing from people with experience in Android and iOS development, front-end (HTML, CSS3, JavaScript) and Java developers (JEE, Spring) looking for new job opportunities. Send us an email with your resume at jobs@fiveminutes.eu.

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Cipele46: A recap of our first community hackathon

This July we hosted our first open hackathon in the office. The purpose was to bring together a number of clever and creative people to collaborate on a project for the community in a short period of time. And we did it! Although it took more time than we first anticipated. More than 40 volunteers have laboured long and hard to create cipele46.org and are still working on the project to improve the platform that connects people with low-income and those who could help by donating clothes, food, personal care items, school supplies, furniture, household goods and anything else that someone might need.

The Idea

The idea to connect people from both groups is not something new in Croatia. We joined forces with Silvija, Verica and Andreja from Cipele46 (en. Shoes 46) who started an initiative on Facebook in January 2013 that gathered more than 2000 people in a matter of days to help a disabled person who just needed a pair of shoes size 46 to get through the cold winter. Today, their Facebook page has almost 27 000 followers who are eager to help others. The organizers of the initiative get more than a thousand requests for help a month, and with different donations they were able to help more than 400 people and families so far. Read more

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The Android Cookbook

From small and affordable to powerful and large, nearly 80% of all newly shipped smartphones in the world use some version of the Android operating system. Primarily designed to be flexible, Android adapts to all types of mobile devices. Regardless of whether the device is a tablet or a smartphone, regardless of the screen size and built-in hardware features, the operating system must always provide the best possible user experience.

I talked about this specific topic at this years Mobility Day conference held in September in Zagreb. This article is just an addition to my talk on the basics for developing adaptable applications and describes the key features of the Android platform.



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Git tips and tricks

In a few short years Git became one of the most popular source control management system, especially for newly started and open source projects. If you’re a developer, you’ll eventually cross paths with Git. Here is a list of a few Git tips and tricks, starting from beginner and progressing to more advanced levels.

These tips assume you’re using Git from a terminal. Even if you’re using GUI every day, it’s a good practice to introduce yourself to CLI because it’s ubiquitous and consistent across all major platforms. Many GUI tools have simplified terminology and support only a subset of functionality, so if you encounter a big problem and need to resolve it from a terminal, it’s better to be familiar with it.

1) Supercharge your terminal

I find many people using Git from a terminal, but they don’t use the full power that is available. First of all, enable color output with:

$ git config --global color.ui true

It will add a line to your global .gitconfig file and will result in log, branch, diff and other commands much more understandable.

Most common shells allow expanding expressions or arguments with the Tab key. The same can work for Git commands if you have git completion set up. Just search install git completion for your chosen platform and follow the instructions.

Someone said that developers working in Git can be recognized by not knowing which branch they’re working on. That is true in some cases but can be completely avoided by having a branch name in your prompt. Just search for git branch in bash/zsh prompt; it’s very easy to set up.

If you’re using Git Bash on Windows, everything should already be set up. Read more

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Developing for Chromecast, a $35 Internet-to-TV streaming stick. Worth your while?

It’s been over two months since Google made a splash with Chromecast, a 2-in gizmo that plugs into your TV’s HDMI port and can be controlled by more than one device – phone, tablet and computer – if they’re on the same Wi-Fi network as the Chromecast.

One of our projects at Five minutes involved implementing the technologies on an Android and iOS app for a client. We gave an intro to developing apps for Google Chromecast a few weeks back at an Android meetup organized by the Google Developer Group Zagreb, hosted at the Faculty of electrical engineering and computing, but would like to share our experience for all those who couldn’t make it.

Google Cast is, essentially, a screen sharing technology that lets users send and control content like video from a small computing device like a phone, tablet or a laptop to a large display device like a TV. For instance, if you like to send a Youtube video from your phone to your TV you can do it easily, without on-screen menus to navigate, no extra devices.

How it works

The Chromecast stick runs a scaled-down Chrome browser with a receiver application that uses websockets to maintain a control channel to mobile devices or a Chrome browser running on a Mac or a PC. For video playback, Google provides an implementation of a special protocol, called RAMP (Remote Application Media Protocol), on top of this channel. When playing a video, the control device uses RAMP to send a URL pointing to the video resource located on the internet or local network, which is then loaded in an HTML5 video element on the Chromecast stick. RAMP provides means to easily send most common video control commands from control device to the stick and to send playback status in the other direction. This flow can be customized to facilitate authentication, DRM and other scenarios. Read more

5 Comments · Posted in Android, Blog, iOS, Technology · Tagged

Jedan po jedan, pedeset i sedam!

Ako niste znali, trenutno brojimo 57 ljudi. Samo u 2013. godini smo zaposlili 19 ljudi, a najbolje od svega je da do kraja godine planiramo zaposliti još 5 do 10. Nije loše.

Danas vam ovdje predstavljamo najnovija pojačanja stigla u samo zadnja dva mjeseca na koja smo posebno ponosni.

UX/UI tim:

Mihovil Vargović, Luka Vida & Domagoj Kapulica

  • Luka Vida [User experience i project management]: Poznat kao predsjednik prilično popularne studentske udruge eStudent.
  • Mihovil Vargović [Dizajn]: Njegov najveći uspjeh je studentski rad prezentiran na Vizkulturi kao jedan od najboljih.
  • Domagoj Kapulica [Dizajn]: Ujedno i glavni Squee dizajner, jedan od novijih hrvatskih startupa.

Development tim:

Miran Brajša, Ivan Blagajić & Matej Vidaković

  • Miran Brajša: Lud za game developmentom, a kod nas će raditi mobile development
  • Ivan Blagajić: Još se nije ni pojavio u uredu jer smo ga odmah poslali kod klijenta u Seattle.
  • Matej Vidaković: Friško s faksa i već par pobjeda s raznih hackathona

Quality Assurance (osječka podružnica):

Bojan Šovagović & Željko Čalić

  • Željko Čalić i Bojan Šovagović: Naš osječki QA tim zapošljava samo ekipu s iskustvom, a tako je i ovdje. Željko i Bojan dolaze kod nas s višegodišnjim iskustvom u tom području.

Sveukupno sada brojimo 57 ljudi.

50+ employees and getting bigger by the day

Kao što rekosmo, planiramo zaposliti još 10-tak ljudi do kraja godine pa se slobodno javite na jobs@fiveminutes.eu ako vas zanima rad u firmi na raketni pogon.

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New people on the block

A great service starts with great people. We’ve been on a hiring roll lately, and have yet to stop. During the last few months we have hired a number of excellent people who have joined our UX/UI design, development and quality assurance teams.

Mihovil Vargović, Luka Vida & Domagoj Kapulica

Luka Vida joined our UX team and will be working closely with our clients and developers designing each client’s mobile assets, running thorough user testing and delivering top-notch usability in every app.

Two junior designers with an incredible potential, Mihovil Vargović and Domagoj Kapulica, will be working with our UI team creating eye-catching and engaging mobile experience. Mihovil’s college project was recently presented at Vizkultura as one of the best student projects originated at art schools across Croatia and abroad, while Domagoj is still involved in his side-kick project Squee, an iOS app for discovering amazing product design and sharing what you like with your friends.

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Flaster won first prize at D-Day

This year’s international festival of design held in Zagreb presented the best young designers from Croatia and neighbouring countries. During the last four years D-Day has become an important venue for networking between young designers, and one of the driving forces of regional activity in the fields of design and creative industries in general.

Our lead designer Vedran Židanik had the opportunity to participate at D-Day with his friend Elvis Mehmedović, an interactive media designer like himself. They entered the festival with Flaster (Patch), a platform for hyperlocal reporting. Their idea was to enable citizens to report on issues in their cities using a mobile application. Read more

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Five Minutes takes part at WinDays13


During the next few days the city of Umag is the centre of the ICT industry. WinDays13, the biggest IT conference in the region, is being held there from April 22nd till 26th. Two of our experts, Merlin Rebrović and Luka Abrus, are among the prominent 127 lecturers that will be introducing the conference participants to new trends in the mobile industry.
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The UX London experience

From 10th to 12th of April, London became the UX capital of the world. The best people in the field gathered around for inspiring talks and intensive workshops. Covering all the talks during the three days of UX London conference would fill a small book, but luckily they were all centered around a few themes and some surprising discoveries. Mind you, these are all my personal impressions, so someone else might have different experiences. Read more

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