Image representing Spotify as depicted in Crun...

Image via CrunchBase

First off, what is Spotify? Spotify is a Swedish music streaming service. Yup, yet another music streaming service but it is not your typical one like Pandora, Last.fm and many others. Spotify has a music library containing over 15 million tracks and are always working on adding more. You can get access to the service from your PC, Mac, home audio system and cell phone. The service started in Europe in 2008 and amassed 10 million users by 2010. It has build relationships with major and independent record label including Sony, EMI, Warner Music Group and Universal.

Stalemate negotiations with US record labels kept the service out the United States until July 14th, 2011. I love beta testing as I might have mentioned before so I jump on it. And WOW! Where have you been baby!!? This service is amazing.

Now let me tell you about the Spotify Android app.

You can go download the app but to use the service on your phone, you will need a premium account at the tune(clever right?) of $9.99/month.

Once you’ve done that, login with your credentials and land in music heaven.

Login Screen

The welcome screen lands you directly into your music library which is “Playlists”  tab as you can on the bottom left.

Playlist Screen
Playlist

On the top, you have the option to “Edit offline playlists”. If you know you’ll be in an area that doesn’t have good service or no wi-fi, sync your files to your Android and you can get access to them at anytime. You should do the syncing on WiFi, you won’t waste your data (except if you have Sprint like me:P) and it’ll go by faster. The process is seamless. Next is the “Inbox”. Any music that your friends have shared with you will go here. Then there is your “Library”. This contains all the music you have added to your collection whether on your pc, phone or home media system. It’s all in the cloud. Not the clouds in the sky but cloud computing. Google it or click on the word, no time to go over that! Next are “Starred” tracks–basically your favorites. Then your “Local music” which is the music that is directly on your device. Scroll down and you’ll see your music library in a detailed manner.

Now if you go on the “Search” tab, you can search for your music by track name, album name or artist name. That’s it. Easy.

Search Screen

Search for Trance

Then you have the middle tab which you can slide up to show what song is currently playing. It will show you the name of the artist and song. album art and play controls. On the bottom left, you can can star or favorite the song. On the bottom left, you have the i to get more info. Clicking on that will show you the name of the name of artist, the name of the album, option to add to playlist, option to repeat and shuffle. When you click on the artist name, you are shown info about the artists “Top Hits”, an “Overview”(shows you info on the single and what album it appears on) and a “Biography”. Clicking on the “Album” name will show you it’s tracklist. And “Add to Playlist” will let you add the song to your specific playlists. Hitting menu from that screen will give you the same options and an option to “Play queue”. This all looks very nice and very functional.

Current Playing Song

Current Song Options

Artist Options

Next tab is “What’s New”. here you’ll find lists of “What’s New”, “Top Tracks” and “Feed”. You can refresh the “Feed” by hitting menu on your device.

What's New

The last tab “More” will give you access to “Settings”, “About” section and the option to “Logout”.

More

The app is beautiful but the most important is the streaming quality. The quality really astonished me. I’ve tried many streaming services or apps and most of them have issues with skipping. I have yet to experience one single skipping incident for the couple of weeks I have used this app whether at home or driving.

Let me not forget the widget. Us Android people love widgets. Sorry, iPhone users!! The widget shows you a thumbnail of the album, name of artist and song and play controls. Clicking on the album art will open the app. And so far, it works like any widget should. Beautifully.

Widget (3rd one)

Now that you know, go get your music on. The Spotify way!