Apple Music on Android (Beta) complete hands-on review
The wait for the Android public for the most anticipated music streaming service is finally over. Apple has finally released its Apple Music app for the Android platform and here we are with a full review of the app. Despite being in the beta state the app worked like a charm with only a few glitches.
Before diving into the review make a note that the beta period does not include the video streaming and family-membership sign-ups yet.
Let’s get started.
Apple Music for Android Review
Being an android user for the past five years, I always strive for the music streaming service when the hype was in the market and when Apple announced at WWDC 2015 that Apple Music will be available for PC and android users, I was thoroughly excited to put my hands on the technology. Despite being a disappointment when it comes to the release date (for the people who signed up for 3-month free trial before the launch of the app), the service is remarkable and a complete Saavn destroyer. I am a Saavn user for past 4 months and the experience has been disastrous. In India, where Spotify has not been released for consumption, I believe that the user is left with Apple Music as the only choice for best music experience available on the market.
The first launch of the app leaves you with no choice but to sign-in to your Apple ID and fill in your payment details. The music is inaccessible without the payment details, which kind of seemed a little funny, but it’s okay when you are signing-up for the 3-month free trial. (Note: Apple charges a temporary fee of Rupees 60 to check your payment details, don’t worry they are reverted back to your account within a week). The standard charges after the free trial is 120 rupees/month for a single user and 190 rupees/month for a family of six.
Post payment details fulfillment, the actual action begins. You are asked for your favorite genres and artists in a very intuitive bubble interface.
After the selection of your favorite artists and music genre, you are taken to the ‘For You’ screen which is the page where you will see the songs and artists depending on your liking you just fed the app using the bubbles.
The first impression was fantastic, with hard to tell that the difference between the iPhone and the Android Beta interface. There is a slider menu on the top-left that defines the various factions within the app. The top-right is served with the search icon, to discover your music in your library or on the entire Apple Music database. The bottom is the player slider. You can discover new music or your favorite ones from over 30 million songs in the Apple Music library.
Now let us move on to the different sections on the slider:
- The ‘New’ section delivers you the latest release in a very dynamic and beautiful manner. Apple has never failed to play with colors and intuitiveness that catch your eyes. The entire app environment is colorful and rich.
- The ‘Radio’ service includes the 24-hour live stream of Beats 1 which seemed pretty flawless and of high quality. There are various radio stations to fit the mood and the liking.
- The ‘Connect’ tab is like a social network for artists to share their work, experience or even lyrics. You can follow the artists, like and comment on their posts and get regular updates on what they are up to.
- The ‘Playlists’ are conventional playlists of your favorite music.
- The ‘My Music’ tab shows you the music added by you to your library by using the plus (+) sign.
The settings tab gives your standard streaming over WiFi or cellular options, controlling of the sorting of songs, a few playback options, diagnostics and usage and the about section. You can also give the Beta Feedback to report the bugs found on your device (bottom right on the stack navigation slider).
Overall the app seems promising and ready to rule the music streaming service. Some of the issues that were experienced by me (I am on android 5.0 and Lenovo A-7000) were, sudden music pauses, scrolling bar being non-responsive and app failing to update the profile picture. The downloads were way slow too. The app does not support storing music in the external SD card being in the Beta state which is a serious issue.
Apple is working hard to outperform the major competitors like Spotify and Google Music in the US. While in India, the streaming services like Gaana, Wynk Music and Saavn have always been the first choice of music lovers. Apple Music is strong, flexible and a reliable music streaming service. With a wide collection of songs and a lot of things to discover, I think Apple Music will become the first choice for music and video streaming in the near future.