I love music. I love all kinds of music. I love free music.
When some coworkers of mine introduced me to Grooveshark, I couldn’t believe it was real. All that music at my fingertips, and for free!
I literally boasted to my friends and family. “Come on, give me any song. ANY song, and I’ll play it for you right now.” And I did. I was proud.
Now there’s all this chitter about Spotify. To be honest, I didn’t really know what it was the first time I heard about it. But, because I love music and I enjoy internet, I wanted to give it a try.
My first question was how Spotify differs from Grooveshark. They essentially seemed like the same thing when I heard about it.
Out of the box, the main difference is that while Grooveshark is a website, Spotify is an app you download.
My first search was the word “guarani” because I wanted to see if they’d have the really random Paraguayan music I want to listen to and can’t buy here. They DO!
To be fair, I searched “guarani” in Grooveshark as well. A lot of the same songs came up, but Spotify has about twice the music Grooveshark does.
Another fantastic feature is that Spotify also picked up all my iTunes music as well. So now I have one place where I can listen to the music I have on my computer and any song I could possibly want to listen to – without having to buy it.
Music management is different
The first real stand-out feature for me is that Spotify can become my music management tool. It picks up the music you have on your hard drive and shows it to you much like iTunes does. However, where it really stands out, is that you can even use it to synch your iPod.
Additionally – and this astounds me – Spotify can synch your iPhone or Android phone as long as your computer and phone are running the app and you’re connected to the same network. I haven’t tried this yet, but I will when I get home. This alone might be the deal-maker for me.
Different levels for different needs
Spotify is free if you want it to be, or you can pay and get some other things. I’m just fine and dandy ignoring ads and the 15 seconds (not TOO frequent) ads and not paying per month. I can see them becoming annoying after a while, so it will be a matter of Spotify as a whole being worth the monthly fee.
For example, in order to use it on your phone, you’ll have to get the premium subscription, which will run you $10 a month. Also with premium, you can use what they call “offline mode” and have your favorite playlists – made up of music you don’t own, remember – available when you’re offline. It’s almost like borrowing the music indefinitely without buying the mp3s.
Update: It’s not all free forever, though. According to this post outlining some changes to Spotify from their blog, after 6 months of use we’ll be limited to 10 hours a month. If I understand correctly, we will also only be allowed to play the same song 5 times. Buying the $5/month subscription will eliminate those limitations, however.
Making it social
In this age, people love sharing stuff. When I find sweet music, I love sharing it.
In my first hour of playing with Spotify, I’ll tell you it’s easier to find users in Grooveshark. There’s allegedly a “social” button in my profile, but I can’t find it.
If you have Spotify and would like to add me (or anyone), put this in your Spotify search bar: spotify:user:hisc1ay
Overall, I’m really impressed
I will probably use Spotify as my “get any song from anywhere for free” from here on out (at least for the next 6 months). I used to use Grooveshark, but they charge for their mobile app now too. Yes, Spotify’s app is more expensive, but the differences are more valuable, potentially.
I won’t go buying a premium subscription yet, but I won’t say I will never buy one. Offline mode and mobile availability are what would eventually swing me that way.
Bottom line: For the price of one CD a month, you can have access to all CDs in their library, which includes labels like Universal, EMI, and Sony.
What’s your favorite thing about Spotify?