Saturday, 19 October 2013

Quick App Review: Google Play Music (All Access)

There are plenty of good music players for Android. PowerAmp and MX Player spring to mind straight away. But how about Google's own offering? Is that good enough for the job?

Google's Play Music is available for all Android devices running Android 2.2+. An iOS version is, reportedly, coming sometime this month (probably around the 28th-29th).

The app plays music files stored on your phone, songs you've uploaded to Google Play, and, if you're subscribed to Google Play All Access, tracks stored on Google's servers too.

One of the big pulls for this app is the ability to upload up to 20,000 of your own songs to Google Play, and download or stream them to any of your devices. Google provides a Music Manager to install on your computer and will upload your songs bit by bit until they're all up. This can take quite a long time, based on your Internet speeds. It took me the best part of two weeks to upload ~7000 songs, although my internet isn't the fastest around.

All Access is Google's equivalent of Spotify. Unlike Spotify though, there's no free option, apart from your own Library. All Access costs €9.99 per month, and, for that, you get unlimited streaming.

So, how does this service work in practice? I've found it to be really quite stable. It's never Force Closed on me, on any of 3 Android devices, and the Web player is also pretty good.

Google updated the app in the last day or two, with an "I'm Feeling Lucky" option. What this does is analyse your listening history, and gives you a Radio station based on that. My music taste isn't quite typical for someone my age, and, so far, I've heard nothing I don't like.

You should try it out, even the free part of the service is well worth checking out.

Google Play Music: https://play.google.com/about/music/