Following Spotify’s launch in the US last week, the Android market for music apps is absolutely booming and there’s still Google Music yet to launch in earnest. If you know your Jeff Buckley from your Jedward, then the time is right to pledge your allegiance to a music player or streaming service of distinction. If you thought the Grimes twins were the authors of ‘Grace’, then you definitely need to grab a music app. Allow Life Of Android to guide you through the finest available.
Since Android is an iTunes free zone, 7digital represents the best platform for mp3 hounds to legally download the latest chart-topping hits and golden oldies from classic artists. With a library of 15 million songs and the ability to wirelessly sync your purchased music from the cloud to your phone, it’s an attractive proposal made all the more alluring by a swish in-app music player. You’ll have to sign up to a 7digital account to start grabbing tracks but it’s a simple process and prices are competitive with albums selling from just £3, a ludicrously enticing offer.
Spotify exists for those people who prefer to access as much music as possible over permanent ownership rights. To use the Spotify Android app in the UK you’ll need to pay a monthly £10 subscription fee. For this princely sum you’ll be able to stream over 10 million tracks from any Spotify-enabled device, be that a PC, laptop, Android-equipped tablet or smartphone. Furthermore, once you’ve saved your playlists for use in ‘Offline mode’ you can even spin them without an internet connection. It literally is an all-you-can-eat buffet of bands and solo acts available at the touch of your Android handset.
PowerAMP doesn’t stream music, it doesn’t sell music, it simply plays music. It can run far more file types than the native Android player meaning MP3, MP4, M4A, ALAC, OGG, WMA, FLAC, WAV, APE, WV and TTA are all covered. Of course, to the uninitiated that reads like a list of carcinogenic food additives but to music geeks, it’s all quite important – albeit in an extremely nerdy way. PowerAMP costs £3 to maintain full functionality after a 15-day free trail and works like a treat, especially when navigating the player from the convenience of its lock screen function. All in all, a sound investment for the discerning Android user.
RealPlayerBeta is another music player for your Android but unlike PowerAMP it’s free to use and will support your videos aand photos as well. The app has been around in Beta for some time now but received an update last week allowing users to create and edit music playlists in their phone, search for tracks and photos using voice recognition and lock their screens whilst using the player. In other words, it’s got all the features to make it a Real, ahem, contender on the Android Market.
Imagine if you could run your own personalised radio station which adjusts itself according to your music taste and suggests new artists which match what you’ve already been listening too. That’s Last.Fm in all its smart-arsed glory. While its Android app is free to download, a £3 per month subscription is mandatory if you want to listen to it’s mobile radio and, of course, you do. In truth, Last.Fm pales in comparison to Spotify but it’s much cheaper to run and its recommended acts are always spot on.