‘Trebel’ rebels with new music sharing app


The Appalachian Online

Katie Murawski

Corey Jones, chief of product at M&M Media, Inc., reached out to Appalachian on Sept. 17 to share with students the new music downloading and sharing app, Trebel Music, available for Android and Apple products.

Gary Mekikian, tech entrepreneur and CEO of M&M Media, Inc., the company behind Trebel, co-founded the application along with daughters Juliette and Grace. The first version of Trebel was patented in 2012. 

Last year the company partnered with major and indie labels and 200 universities to help design the user experience. Mekikian describes Appalachian State University as “one of the larger, more diverse and socially active campuses in the region” – a reason why Trebel will be launched specifically at App State.

According to a Trebel press release sent out by Jones, “what sets Trebel apart from other music services is that its designers are predominantly the college students and young adults that comprise its audience.”

Mekikian adds that “young folk” were the focus of the design.

“Trebel is by millennials and for millennials,” he said. 

Trebel users earn virtual currency through the consumption of advertisements to “pay” for downloading music. Users can download an unlimited amount of songs and music videos by using “coins” as virtual currency, earned when the user consumes an advertisement.

“The more music you download the more [virtual currency] you earn,” Mekikian said. “Coin earnings are dependent on the type of ad delivered and how much the advertising company pays. For instance, you could earn 100 coins from just watching a video advertisement.”

Trebel is, as Mekikian describes, “a zero data music listening experience, designed for students on a budget.” Since the file is downloaded directly to the user’s device, most songs can be downloaded and played without using Wi-Fi.

Mekikian said the software constantly monitors the amount of space and tells the user when they are low on storage. It also automatically takes songs the user has not listened to in a while and “casts” the file in the cloud and stores the track within the users account. 

Trebel is “completely customizable” according to Mekikian. Users can change the colors of their profiles through Trebel’s “unique” technology that reads the album art. By finding which artist profile the user wants to mimic to a “save the theme”  option, the user shakes their phone and the color of that theme is saved as the user’s profile. 

“Young people love to interact with their social media,” Mekikian said, referring to this concept.

Other Trebel features include integrating iTunes and Google Play libraries, navigating other music while playing a song, watching and downloading music videos, viewing lyrics while listening and downloading unlimited songs from the server.

“We’re big believers in the value of music, but there’s a gap in the market for a reliable service that delivers on demand, mobile music to college students who can least afford to pay,” Jones said. “Trebel is for the student on a budget who deserves more than shuffled radio, but cannot afford a premium subscription.”

Mekikian described Trebel services as “complementary, but not competitive” with other music services like Pandora and Spotify.

“Trebel is download and play, not a music streaming app,” he said. “Say you find a song on Pandora; you can download it for yourself using Trebel.”

The only competition, Mekikian explains, is MP3 converter sites.

“The Trebel dream is to have a safe, fun place for young people to find, enjoy and download music while properly compensating the artist at the same time,” Mekikian said.

Story by: Katie Murawski, A&E Reporter