Remember the days when you had to lug around a music player as well as a mobile phone? Happily, those times are long gone.
Now, thanks to ever-increasing amounts of on-board memory and expansion slots, powerful processers and excellent accessories listening to music on your Nokia Lumia isn’t simply convenient, it’s a finger clicking joy. So if you like your tunes on the go, which of the dozens of music apps available at the Windows Phones Store is a must have? That’s the question we’ve been asking ourselves here at Nokia Conversations, and after much heated discussion, we’ve whittled it down to a shortlist of eleven. Now, we’d like your help. All you need to do is check out the list below then vote in the poll at the bottom for the one that most rocks your world.
Hey, an obvious choice, but, in our humble opinion, it really does the business. Hundreds of specially-curated playlists that you can stream and download for free – what’s not to love? Plus the app can assess your tastes based on the music stored on your phone and then create a mix especially for you, and you can check for locals gigs, gets artist info, search for other available tracks by that artist… It’s the app that keeps on giving.
An oldie but a goodie: a tune’s playing and you can’t quite recall what it is, but it’s really bugging you. Who do you call? Shazam! Hold your phone up and the app will listen and then scan its immense archive of track info to tell you the title, artist, album, year, label, cover art… We don’t know how we ever got by without this one.
3. TuneIn Radio
It’s like Radioplayer, but for an international audience – find and tune in to your favourite radio stations worldwide. It’s got a shockingly brilliant number of stations (over 100,000 at last count) and so, statistically, it really does have something for everyone… We particulate love this one when we’re on holidays.
A third-party WP client for Soundcloud, Audiocloud lets you check out explore the vast world of Soundcloud uploads: you can browse and listen to tracks, podcasts and other audio files by the millions of independent artists that have signed up to the service. As well as simply listening, the app also lets you repost and comment on tracks, follow people, create your own ringtones, download content to your phone’s music library and more. The interface is clear and matches the native WP design really nicely, and there’s so much to listen to that you’ll be up all night, every night, getting your outside-the-mainstream groove on.
If you’ve got a Spotify Premium account you can use the mobile version of this massively popular service: browse their huge library of tunes, create playlists, stream music or take your playlists out for a trip in offline mode. Alter a playlist on your phone and it’ll sync to your account. Although Spotify Premium isn’t free (there’s a monthly subscription charge), it’s well worth it, what with the size of their catalogue and the multi-platform nature of it. You can trial it for 48 hours – we bet you’ll be hooked.
6. Xbox Music
Xbox Music is the Windows Phone Store app of the native client baked into your Nokia Lumia which allows you to can explore, stream and download millions of songs on your device. The biggest difference between the two is the ability to create playlists and then have them sync to your account to other devices. This is especially useful if you have a range of Windows devices.
An alternative to Shazam, SoundHound is possibly a little speedier, though which you prefer might come down to the two apps’ aesthetics. We’re very fond of SoundHound’s Live Lyrics feature – it’s like having your own personal karaoke machine! It also works on humming and singing, and you can voice-activate the app.
A newcomer to the WP market, Plex organizes your personal media and streams it between your PC, laptop and phone (as long as you’re running their free server). It makes it suoer easy to share your music files with friends and to queue media from sites like YouTube and then watch them later on any of your devices. One for the geeks, maybe, but one that’ll streamline your whole music library experience.
Songza is always worth a listen, mainly thanks to its playlists. Songza’s virtual mixtapes are tailored according to the time of day, the activity you’re doing, the tempo you’re after, the mood you’re in, the day of the week… The options and the curatorial thought that has gone into this one has blown our minds! So: Friday morning, we’ve woken up happy, and the DJ’s playing Start Me Up by the Stones. Fantastic!
Like Audiocloud, this is linked to Soundcloud – it lets you listen to and download all the tracks and files on that massive database. What we particularly like about this one, though, is the way it’s tailored beautifully to match the Windows Phone user interface: it’s clean, it’s easy to navigate and it’s speedy, to boot. Get listening!
A relative newcomer to the Windows Phone Store, Pandora is a personalized audio service; tell it your song, composer, artist, or even comedian, and Pandora will create a custom station just for you. You can create and store up to 100 stations and fine-tune them by giving particular tracks the thumbs up or down. Stick it in the Kids’ Corner and all adult content will get filtered out. It’s free and it’s multiplatform and we’re sure it’ll be a favourite with WP users before long.
Eleven awesome apps, we’re sure you’ll agree. Questions is which one do you think should be top of the charts? Vote below or if your favourite isn’t here, vote other and share it with the world in the comments.
Image credit: Marília Almeida