On Monday, I was having a browse through the App Store on my IPhone, when I spotted something that I’ve been waiting ages for: Spotify. For the uninitiated amongst you, Spotify is a free application that allows you to legally stream music to your PC, from a catalogue of millions of songs. Oh, it’s also free! The next obvious step was for it to go mobile, and here it was.
I downloaded immediately and attempted to log on using my existing account. It didn’t work, saying that you need to have a ‘premium’ account. How very frustrating. The premium accounts cost £9.99 per month and so the dream of mobile Spotify was squashed before it could even begin.
It took about an hour before I succumbed and upgraded my account, the temptation proving far too strong. Fortunately, there is no minimum contract and you can cancel the subscription at any point, so it seemed like a good way to spend a tenner. I was out and about when I first logged in to the app, and, since I wasn’t on wifi, I didn’t think it would work properly over 3G. I was wrong and it started streaming immediately and was indistinguishable from MP3s, and it carried over the playlists that I’d set up on my PC. Very impressive.
When I got home, I found that you can set your playlists to sync over wifi and create an offline copy on your iPhone. This is a killer feature for the app, and allows you to listen to your choices anywhere.
There are a few drawbacks; you have to listen to the music in the spotify player and so it isn’t integrated with your iPhone music, and the clicker controls don’t work on your earphones. The music also seems to stop when your phone autolocks when you are steaming music over 3G (it works fine for offline music, so perhaps I need to investigate this further). The other obvious downside is that once you cancel a subscription you no longer have access to the music!
The app has only got a two star rating on the App Store, mainly because people are outraged that it isn’t all free. Do they really expect to be able to carry around any music they like for free? Well, obviously they do. In an ideal world, I’d like it to be free too, but you have to be realistic. You can hardly buy anything these days for £10, so it doesn’t seem a lot to pay for what you are getting. Maybe my opinion on this will change, I’ll let you know.
I definitely recommend getting Spotify for your PC, and you can see if it is for you.