SoundCloud, the free music service particularly favored by independent and grassroots musicians, has finally added 'stations,' a sort of never-ending playlist of related tracks and songs. The feature has been in beta for about a week, and is now hitting the release version of the Android app. While new for SoundCloud, this is something that's been available on most other music streaming services for quite a while. Spotify and Apple Music call it 'radio,' and Play Music has 'instant mixes,' but they are all different names for the same thing.
Creating a station is a simple matter of picking one of your favorite songs and selecting the "Start track station" from the three-dot menu. Read More
Audio latency is defined as the time delay that a signal experiences as it passes through a system. On a mobile device, this is deeply related to how long it takes between tapping on a screen and receiving audio feedback. Low audio latency can be the difference between an immersive gaming experience and an unpleasant, disconnected one. Too long a latency and a device can begin to feel strangely laggy, even if every visual animation is snappy and responsive. It is especially important — essential, even — for recording and composing music, since slow audio feedback can easily throw off even the best artists and destroy their creative process. Read More
Opera Max isn't a browser. It's an Android utility that works in the background to apply the same data compression you've come to expect from Opera's regular and Mini browsers, except it does it on all of (or most of) your apps without you having to worry about a thing.
A couple of months ago, it added support for video compression from YouTube and Netflix, and now it's tackling another culprit of data consumption: audio. The three apps that Opera Max' compression algorithms will take care of are Pandora, SoundCloud, and Slacker. You won't have to do a thing for this to work. Read More
The idea of using multiple phones as speakers to play the same music isn't new. It was popularized by Samsung's Group Cast way back in the Galaxy S3 days and has since gotten over that proprietary requirement thanks to third-party apps like SoundSeeder that made it possible to tune Android devices together, regardless of their brand. As a newcomer in the field, AmpMe has a lot to prove against tough and established competition. The app manages a few victories thanks to cross-platform compatibility, but loses in terms of services supported. For now, that's only SoundCloud, although the developers say more are coming. Read More
The newest version of SoundCloud, which rolled out in the past week, has added a way to get independently created music streaming through your television sets. Now when you fire up the app, Chromecast-owning users will see the familiar icon located in the action bar. Or it will appear in the bottom left-hand corner if music is already playing. Read More
SoundCloud version 15.06.09 is now rolling out to devices, but its visual changes aren't immediately apparent. Here's where you need to look. When you go to record audio, you're in for a much whiter experience. And no, I'm not talking about anyone's lyrics.
Left: Old, Right: New
Rather than changing everything all at once, SoundCloud has introduced material elements bit by bit. The most pressing ones came at the beginning of this year, but the recording interface went untouched. Now it better fits in with the app's new current look and feel.
The same can be said for SoundCloud's playback widget. Read More
The SoundCloud Android app has received a slight visual touch-up in the latest update, version 14.12.18-43. Users will now see a slightly more spacious action bar, rounded menus, and Lollipop notifications. These tweaks sit on top of previous user interface changes that still look bright, colorful, and clean.
Another change takes effect only when you pause music. The changelog says that the background album art gets blurred, but on my Nexus 7, I only noticed dimming. Regardless, it's a nice visual aid.
The remaining changes consist of various bugfixes, including one that interrupted streams and another that affected logging in on a Samsung device running Android 4.2.2. Read More
Early this summer, T-Mobile announced a Music Freedom plan that would allow customers to stream music from select services without impacting their data allotment. Some people opposed this offering on principle. Others were simply upset to see their favorite services not supported. Around these parts, Google Play Music topped the list of what folks wanted to see.
T-Mobile said it was going to do something about this, and now it has. Google Play Music is available to Music Freedom customers, in addition to 13 other services.
The list of additions include:
- Digitally Imported
- Fit Radio
- Fresca Radio
- Google Play Music
- Mad Genius Radio
- Xbox Music
These services join the 13 already available: AccuRadio, Black Planet, Grooveshark, iHeartRadio, iTunes Radio, Pandora, Radio Paradise, Rdio, Rhapsody, Samsung Milk Music, Slacker, Songza, and Spotify. Read More
SoundCloud has made the jump to version 2.8, bringing along a few new enhancements in the process. Many of them are visual, though the changes are small. Tabs are white now. The explore section introduced in version 2.7 has had the position of artist names and song titles moved around, as have the search results. Speaking of searching, the app has new support for hashtags and recommends a page filled with them when clicking on the search icon.
In addition to these niceties, SoundCloud now supports pulling down to refresh the page. Go ahead, give it a tug.
As always, the goods are available in the widget below. Read More