Many social media revolutions have occurred in the past few years, and your music library is next. With services like Spotify, Rdio, Pandora, and Last.fm you can now access a complete music library or collection without ever owning the album, and full access to millions of tracks for free or with a nominal fee.
Drew Tyler, instructor of Digital Media at Weber State University, recently taught a class at the Wildcat Tech Expo titled, “No I in iTunes.” In the class he spoke about different music services. Each of these services range from free to roughly ten dollars.
According to Tyler, Spotify, a music streaming application, has been receiving more attention than other services here in the United States. When it arrived from the United Kingdom in July of 2011, Spotify was in a beta period in which only those who were sent an invite, or received one from a friend were allowed to open an account. Recently the service has allowed for new users to open an account without a request.
“I am so excited that Spotify has finally come to the United States,” says Alex Werner, a student at Weber State University. “It saves me, as a college student, from ever having to really buy music again.”
Spotify is a new revolution to music and social networking that enables users friends to see the music they listen to. Spotify allows users to integrate their iTunes library, and streaming content from the service into one player to build their music library, all for free.
“Millions of tracks, anytime you like,” according to Spotify.com. “Just search for it in Spotify, then play it. Just help yourself to whatever you want, whenever you want it.”
Everyone has that friend that gets complimented on their music, and envied for it, and now Spotify will allow users to see what their friends are listening to, making it easy to add to any playlist.
“Thanks to Spotify and Facebook, you can see and hear what your friends are listening to – just hit play on any post,” says Spotify.
Integration with current iTunes playlists makes it easy to listen to content already owned, and Spotify’s music collection, creating a seamless playback on any computer, or mobile device with the application.
“I’ve never used Spotify myself, but from what I have heard and seen, I think it is a good idea and something worth looking into,” says Tyce Harrison, a senior at Weber State University.
Many students have had the same reaction, and are intrigued by what they have learned over the past couple of months. After finding out more, many were willing to go and see for themselves what Spotify is all about.
Streaming to mobile devices is just as easy as it is on a computer. However, Spotify does charge for services not on a computer, as well as to listen to content without advertisements and unlimited playback. According to spotify.com, users can stream 10 hours of content free of charge. For either $5 or $10 you can get their unlimited or premium services which will remove the playback restriction.
Spotify is diving into exclusive content releases, just as iTunes has done with The Beatles album which isn’t available on Spotify because of digital restrictions.
“We’re excited to announce that Spotify users will be the first to get their hands on Habits of the Heart from Idle Warship,” according to Spotify’s blog online.
Despite its usefulness there are a few downfalls.
“Spotify does make it hard to find new music without using your friends. iTunes always has a top ten or something that shows me nationwide trends, which I enjoy,” said Werner, and many other users echo the sentiment.
Services like Spotify are making it easier to find new music, and more accessible. For college students it is one less expense to have, and comes in handy when studying for a test, exercising, or just for entertainment.
What do you think of Spotify and other services like it? Is it something that you would find useful? Or do find useful!? Tell Harrison Studio what you think about all of this, it could lead to more information or a great discussion!