In the category of cool things you probably haven’t ever heard of: Spotify.
I love iTunes. It has changed the way we listen to music, forever. I don’t like to pirate music, movies or software. I would rather pay a fair (hopefully low) price for it and just own it. The drawbacks to iTunes are expense and storage... I had to clear my iTunes library off my computer in order to have more disk space for our Archangel music project, and moving the library to an external hard drive freed up about 330GB of disk space! That is half the capacity of my computer’s internal hard disk. The new “Cloud” from iTunes is changing that... now you can store songs, apps and TV shows in the Cloud instead of keeping them on your own storage. But at some point you have to wonder, do I really need to own all of this music that I may not even listen to next year, or even next month?
Enter Spotify. Now, I like Pandora and I like iHeart Radio, and some of the other internet “radio stations” out there. But Spotify is different.
1. You can make playlists and listen to them online, without purchasing the music. So far in all my searches, there have only been a couple of songs I haven’t been able to get, and those were songs that are “album only” purchases on the iTunes store.
2. You don’t have to listen to all the songs that Pandora picks for you based on your specified preferences... you pick them out for yourself. For instance, the new Lady Antebellum album was released yesterday. It was immediately up on Spotify.
3. Spotify synchs with your iTunes library to make all of your existing playlists available in a very attractive interface.
4. If you upgrade from Spotify Free to Spotify Premium, all of your playlists can be available off-line and synch with your iPhone or other smartphone via a free app, so that you can listen to any of your songs anytime, anywhere. That means that for $9.99 a month, the price of one non-deluxe album on iTunes, you have access to every song, and none of the songs is taking up a single kilobyte of your own storage space.
5. Spotify links to Facebook so that any of your Facebook friends who have Spotify can access your playlists (should you elect to make them public, which I do), and you, theirs.
Why haven’t you heard of Spotify? Probably because it has been used internationally for the last two years, but only made it to the U.S. in the last few months. How do you get it? You have to receive an invitation. To request that invitation, you can click here or leave a comment on this post with your e-mail... I may have a few invitations left on my account.
Spotify. Go get it.