Sony Music Unlimited Review

Sony Music Unlimited Review

Oct 8, 2014

“Daddy?”

“Yep?”

“What is that ‘CD’ thingie they are talking about on that show?”

We’ve come a long way. Not that long ago, having one’s music on the go meant investing in a CD case or one of those hideous auto visor holders. Now, our smartphones are our streaming hubs.

And mighty Sony is on it it — in the manifestation of the subscription-based Sony Music Unlimited streaming service.

After setting up the service (which involved redeeming the review code Sony provided), the next thing was to download the accompanying from the Play Store. using the app, one is easily able to navigate the service. it’s possible to browse the catalog by genre. For premium subscribers, there is the channel feature, which parses thesum1 music into common-ground groups; channels range from “Bollywood” to “Assassin’s Creed” and beyond. There is even a “Comedy Nightclub” channel, which rocks stuff from Cheech and Chong all the way to Chris Rock, I liked the ability to create one’s own channels. There is also a Library section in the main menu which allows users to collate favorite music.

The service allows for streaming (obviously), but also gives users the ability to pin music offline; this is great for when might be lacking internet connectivity.

One of the biggest question a music service has to answer is the one that pertains to content. On this front, Sony Music Unlimited packs a major punch; not shocking, considering we’re talking about, well, Sony here. It boasts more than 30 million songs, which is far from shabby. In reality, it picked up almost every artist I threw at it across genres. I was happy to find entire albums from even obscure artists; it didn’t have ALL, but I think I could be satisfied with the selection. The audio is quite clear (320 kbps High Quality Audio), and no ads to contend with.

The ability to access the premium service on the web, multiple mobile platforms, Playstation consoles/handhelds and compatible Sony electronics adds to its allure.

I think the search engine can be tweaked a good deal; in some of my searches, it seemed to be quite reliant on exactness, which can be a tough with regards to zany spellings of artist names and songs, and even then, finding songs can be infuriating. There are some instances that I think the UI could be a bit more logical off the search too; there were times a song/artist search came up blank when the song was indeed in the catalog.

Yes, the streaming music space is pretty packed for Android, but Sony knows a thing or two about this entertainment, and it brings that knowledge to bear in this product.

Good for us.

Amazon Prime Music Streaming Launches on Android – But Don’t Cancel Spotify Yet

Amazon Prime Music Streaming Launches on Android – But Don’t Cancel Spotify Yet

Jun 12, 2014

Amazon has launched a new feature for Prime users: free music streaming. The Amazon MP3 app has been updated to support this new music streaming functionality. The entire Amazon music catalog of 28 million+ songs isn’t available for streaming, but about 1 million are, so it might not be worth canceling Spotify quite yet if you also have a Prime membership. The Amazon Music with Prime Music app is available now on Google Play.

Skifta Review

Skifta Review

Aug 20, 2012

All of the digital media collected over time seems to end up sitting at home more than it should. On those nights out, there are times when a playlist from home might be just what the party needs. Skifta is an app for Android giving access to all of your digital media and the ability to stream it to a Wi-Fi device like a TV or PS3.

The way Skifta does it’s thing is not just through the Android app, there are other parts too it. An online account is needed as the “middle man” and an app is needed for the Windows computer at home to allow the connection. All of those can be downloaded for free here: http://www.skifta.com/getting-started

Once everything is downloaded, it’s a matter of connecting everything. The steps to make the connections are pretty are laid out pretty well on the Skifta site. One tip many people might overlook is to make sure the firewall on the home computer will allow Skifta to accept incoming requests. This may also need to be changes in the computer’s anti-virus program.

In testing, everything went great with streaming music. It pulled up my entire music library and streamed music I don’t have anywhere on my tablet. I have a few .avi files on my computer from screencasts. They played just fine but took a little longer to load than the music did.

When using a PS3 to stream to, there is an option for an unlisted player. This will let any device connected to the same Wi-Fi network find and stream from Skifta on the Android phone. Simply fire up the PS3 and go to the spot where the media servers show up.

Overall Skifta is pretty easy to use. Because there are not a lot of other free options that work this well, I have no real complaints on how it works.

Rdio Coming to Verizon V CAST Apps with Carrier Billing

Rdio Coming to Verizon V CAST Apps with Carrier Billing

May 4, 2011

Rdio, the subscription music streaming service, is coming to Verizon’s V CAST Apps on Android. The app, which allows users to stream and download unlimited amounts of music on a subscription basis from the web, is getting direct carrier billing to Verizon customers, so customers can just pay for the service with their monthly phone bill automatically, eschewing the hassle of having to share credit card information directly.

Considering that carriers like Verizon once tried to launch their own methods of selling mobile music in the past, this is just another nail in the coffin of carrier control over users’ phones and where they get the content on those phones from. While this is still coming to a carrier-specific App Store, and the app will still be available through other app stores, this just shows how the carriers are changing when it comes to mobile music – where they once sought to take a piece of the pie, they are now willing to support others’ services. However, granted that this is coming to Verizon’s own app marketplace, this may be the new battleground for carriers to try and use to their advantage.