Over the past week or two you may have noticed a trend in updates on whatever social media system you use, people waxing poetic on the latest and greatest in music delivery. It's something that they're calling Spotify and apparently the kids think it's just swell. Here's a sampling of some of the commentary I've seen floating around on my Facebook page:
"Spotify is pretty awesome. I feel paralyzed though. Too much music to choose from"
"I'm so tech savvy that I'm probably not even using it properly, but Spotify IS CHANGING MY LIFE!!!"
"Spotify - pretty cool service. if only i could get it onto my work PC"
"I fully approve of Spotify"
On the general that's an extremely positive response (I can hardly wait for the ironic hipster backlash) and while there have been some doubts about whether this European import can truly take hold of a large market share in the U.S. I'm less skeptical of that criticism. My own personal experience using the program have been about on par with what the Facebook peeps are saying. Here are my first thoughts after spending just a couple days playing around with Spotify:
- The baseline version is 100% free ! After that you can pay $5 per month to get the ads to go away and you get unlimited streaming. For $10, you can listen to Spotify's music on your mobile phone, too.
- Being able to cherry pick songs, store them and then re-access them at a moment's notice is pretty frakkin' convenient. Doing it on my phone would be even better.
- The library is pretty extensive and vaster than say, Grooveshark (my definitive, isolated example of this is that I can find Oasis tracks on Spotify but not a one on Grooveshark. Advantage: Spotify)
- The ads are about as unobtrusive as they can get (though they did crash the program a couple times)
- I've had some issues with the software freezing up on my or crashing after playing advertisements. Over the first twenty or so hours of use I'd say I had to restart about three or four times. Not ideal.
- The music library is not inexhaustible and on occasion you will be annoyed when you're looking for an artist or track you can't find (how quickly we feel gain that sense of entitlement, eh?)
- $10 a month seems a little steep to having the whole kitten caboodle streaming into my phone... yet at the same time I'm seriously tempted to go there. So maybe the price point is exactly right from a supply and demand point of view
The Bottom Line:
Like it or not streaming entertainment is the future of how we're going to listen to music (not to mention watch movies, television, etc...) so I suppose the only question is how early are you going to jump on the bandwagon?
My suggestion is try it. It's free and really you have nothing to lose... except maybe the endless hours you spend scouring for songs and tinkering with playlists.