If you've ever needed to identify a song that is playing somewhere around you, you've probably already used SoundHound or Shazam which both listen to your surroundings and pop up the best guess - usually right on the money.

The two apps are pretty similar, though they obviously use different algorithms, so I always keep both on my phone just in case. Additionally, SoundHound recognizes humming and whistling, which makes it even more valuable.

While the free version of Shazam allows only 5 IDs per month, SoundHound went unlimited in their basic app a few months back. So, why would anyone use SoundHound Infinity then, a $5 app that is free in the Amazon Appstore today, when they could identify an unlimited amount of songs for free?

If you're confused, you're not alone - I had to really dig into both apps' descriptions to figure out the differences. There are not many:

  • SoundHound Infinity contains no ads
  • It includes a homescreen widget, allowing for even faster access to song IDs

Have a look at the screenshots of the free version of SoundHound that I just took - the ads are pretty in-your-face, aren't they? Considering today SoundHound Infinity is completely free, there is no reason to pass on the deal whatsoever (unless you're outside the U.S. that is).

snap20110330_002824 snap20110330_002908

The ad-free experience is a lot better:

snap20110330_004948 snap20110330_005003

Not bad at all, Amazon - I am starting to find myself giddy as the clock strikes midnight every day.

Source: SoundHound Infinity in the Amazon Appstore

Artem Russakovskii
Artem is a die-hard Android fan, passionate tech blogger, obsessive-compulsive editor, bug hunting programmer, and the founder of Android Police.
Most of the time, you will find Artem either hacking away at code or thinking of the next 15 blog posts.

  • Al

    I really wish Amazon would hurry up and get their App Store rolled out to more countries, it's killing me seeing all these awesome apps going for free and not being able to get them.

  • ari-free

    Amazon seems to be learning. When they offered shazam as free, reviewers wrote it was good but not quite as good as Soundhound. So I went over to the soundhound reviews and one person wrote that she actually ended up with soundhound based on those shazam reviews.

  • Zohan

    More and more software will be pirated if they don't allow access to the Amazon store from countries other than the US..

    • Edd

      Agreed. I hope this US-only is temporary -otherwise it's just even more fragmentation for the OS

    • Adam

      "Give me what I want or I intend to steal it from you".

      It's hard to believe there was a time when people just accepted that they could not have something when it was not made available to them.

      • Cheefoid

        That type of acceptance stopped when the Net made it possible to share, the good and the bad bits.. on topic; ad-free takes care of my ads in soundhound as well :-)

  • Lou

    The only thing I wonder is if the app is free until the next update.

    If it is free with free updates then I would be surprised.

  • TK

    I've been getting the daily free apps and a few have already had updates... I've updated and the apps are still the paid version so it appears to be free apps WITH free updates.

    The way the amazon free apps work is that you have to provide a payment option and they generate an "invoice" just like any other purchse... only it says "$0.00". So as far as the app maker is concerned, you bought the app which also means unlimited updating unless the app maker changes their policy.

    • sjpm

      So far as the app maker is concerned, you DID purchase it.

      The Amazon appstore dev contract specifies that a dev will still get paid some amount per install if the app gets selected as free app of the day. I'm not sure on the breakdown, they don't get full price but I'm sure volume more than makes up for that.

      In any case, point is: you're a paying customer to them, of course you get upgrades.

  • Steve

    The app maker is still getting paid (although it's a lot less than the list price) by Amazon, so it's not like they're getting nothing for it. Also, about the us only complaints, remember that this market still has some issues to work out and it's better that they stick to one location until those things are worked out.

  • Piper Down

    Unfortunately, if you have enabled app2sd, the widget option disappears.

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      Actually, that's a bug with Android in general, from what I can tell, so they probably just went with the safe option and disabled the widget altogether if they detect apps2sd.

      • Foo

        I didn't think you could actually install widgets to the SD card?

        • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

          The bug manifests itself when the app is moved to SD, but when the phone boots and the SD card isn't available yet (there's a bit of a delay while the OS is preparing it), but the launcher already expects the widget to be there. For this reason, I never moved BeyondPod to SD.

  • http://megaopolis.com Vinny

    Not worth the grief. Followed the instructions, logged into my Amazon account and then got this video. Okay.

    Checked my email and followed the instructions. Downloaded the Amazon App. Okay.

    Opened the app, logged into my account and clicked on the SoundHound icon. Okay.

    "Purchased Failed." Something about turning on 1-click purchasing from my Amazon account. Okay.

    Logged into my Amazon account, again and turned on 1-click. Okay.

    Went back to my device and after 3 attempts and 3 failed purchases I simply uninstalled the worthless Amazon app. Even free is not worth the grief.

    But hey - Google was my friend getting it for free somewhere else without any grief!

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      That's a shame you had such a poor experience - mine was quite flawless. I would recommend trying to purchase apps from the web portion of the appstore on your computer and then they'll show up in your Android app when you load it next time.

  • http://koowie.com Koowie

    Once you get over the "cool" factor, I hardly use this app anymore.