Spotify made news earlier today by lowering its barrier to entry, allowing users to stream music to their phone or tablets for free. Yet it isn't the only music-streaming service in town, and competitor Rdio has expanded access to 20 additional countries. This brings the total number of supported territories up to 51, which this handy map illustrates.
With Google Play Music All Access coming to more and more countries around the world (though obviously still not all of them), Google is expanding the reach of its all-you-can-eat music platform into regions where services like Spotify reign supreme. Listening to music on your smartphone (or tablet) is probably an activity all of us partake in, too, so I'm curious to know what kind of services our readers actually like enough to pay for.
A few months ago we told you about a nifty music streaming app called SoundSeeder, which lets you stream audio directly from one Android device to another over WiFi. At the time I mentioned that it was a cool idea, but the fact that it didn't allow users to stream Google Music songs over the connection was a bit of a let down. Developer JekApps took my complaint under advisement, and let us know that there's a new version that enables Google Play Music streaming after all.
Yesterday Billboard issued a report claiming that Google subsidiary YouTube is preparing to release a streaming music service. This service would be offered in both free and premium tiers a la Spotify, and it is reportedly a separate entity from Google Play's music service, All Access. Specific details on date and price are not available, but Billboard claims that all the licensing deals made through All Access will be available for the new service and a launch is tentatively planned for before the end of the year.
The latest Spotify update isn't anything major, but it should help make it easier to navigate the vast amount of content out there and discover what new tunes you might be interested in. Clicking on the Browse section of the Spotify side navigation menu shoots you out to a grid of genres to choose from. Clicking on any of them presents suitable artists, and there's a menu at the top where you can break down the genre even further.
It should come as little surprise that many of us who own multiple Android devices trust Google to tend to much of our music streaming needs. Even if you don't subscribe to All Access, Google Music offers one of the easiest ways to access your personal collection across multiple devices, including smartphones, tablets, and PCs. But what about your TV? Your Xbox 360? If you want to stream music from Google on devices that aren't officially supported, Cast To UPnP/DLNA For GMusic, from the developer of BubbleUPnP, has you covered.
Back in October Subsonic was updated with a Holo interface, which was a vast improvement over the old UI. However, that update also included ads. There was a $4.44 in-app purchase to remove them, but now that's a thing of the past. The new version of Subsonic for Android is completely ad-free by default.
The upsell in the app didn't really make much sense in the first place.
Over a year ago, Google removed the Grooveshark app from what was then the Android Market due to a violation of the terms of service. Of course, with a service like Grooveshark, being removed from the Play Store was just the first of its worries - the company has definitely seen its fair share of legal issues over the last several months. Still, after its departure from the Store, Grooveshark continued to offer the app free of charge through its website.
The "freemium" music streaming service Spotify has had great success on the desktop and on iOS, but its Android offering has always been rather lacking, with an extremely dated-looking application that did no justice to the greatness of the service itself. Back in April, Spotify made its first motions towards bringing the app up to speed with a public beta of a rather pretty Holo-themed application for Android 4.0, and now that beta has borne fruit.
Up until now, there have been two types of music services to choose from (aside from local media, of course) - streaming radio like Pandora or Slacker, or personal content streaming with services like Google Music or Amazon Cloud Player. mSpot is looking to change the game, however, by combining the two.
The updated mSpot Music app really is a great idea - it combines your personal music collection with streaming music discovery radio.