Feeds

Spotify on iPhone: nice app, but no multitasking

A fatal flaw?

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

The application shows cover art, and offers shuffle and repeat - but that's all. In this first version, as with the desktop, there's no cruft that bedraggles also-ran services like Last.fm. There are few options or tweaks you can make to fine tune this minimal application - this "version 1.0" is numbered 0.3.19.

There isn't much to tweak in this version

The verdict - and is it worth a tenner?

The iPhone application even in its minimal state has some of the "wow" factor of the desktop version. But the lack of background playback is potentially a deal-breaker. At a guess, at least a third of iPhone users on the Tube I see are doing something else with their device, alongside listening to music. They may not be satisfied by staring at Spotify's cover art.

This isn't going to be a problem for S60 users and Android phone owners. The Android version is already available, while the S60 client can be previewed here on YouTube. Both those versions play your songs in the background, while you get on with something else.

Is it worth it?

This seems almost an absurd question to ask, but we're living in strange times. The Fred Neil collection above is worth a tenner of anyone's money. Spotify rewards the curious with endless such discoveries. Value for money is terrific - and it makes the Torrent trackers look crufty.

But not everyone rates value for money. Some people who may spend £350 on an iPod, ferociously object to paying less than a quid to obtain DRM-free songs they can keep for a lifetime. They'll go and blog about the injustice of it, sign petitions, or even form political parties.

If there is a legitimate criticism about Spotify, it's one we haven't heard much of yet. Spotify is a walled garden, with the music enclosed inside a proprietary DRM system. The music can only go where Spotify wishes. Again, as with Rhapsody, this is not a deal-breaker for many people. But caveat emptor - your music "collection" depends entirely on you paying money every month.

The combination of music and technology industries still haven't given us the option of both true sharing and true ownership in the one service - even though us music lovers would pay handsomely for the privilege. ®

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Sonos AXES support for Apple's iOS4 and 5
Want to use your iThing? You can't - it's too old
Amazon says Hachette should lower ebook prices, pay authors more
Oh yeah ... and a 30% cut for Amazon to seal the deal
Philip K Dick 'Nazi alternate reality' story to be made into TV series
Amazon Studios, Ridley Scott firm to produce The Man in the High Castle
Too many IT conferences to cover? MICROSOFT to the RESCUE!
Yet more word of cuts emerges from Redmond
Joe Average isn't worth $10 a year to Mark Zuckerberg
The Social Network deflates the PC resurgence with mobile-only usage prediction
Chips are down at Broadcom: Thousands of workers laid off
Cellphone baseband device biz shuttered
Feel free to BONK on the TUBE, says Transport for London
Plus: Almost NOBODY uses pay-by-bonk on buses - Visa
Twitch rich as Google flicks $1bn hitch switch, claims snitch
Gameplay streaming biz and search king refuse to deny fresh gobble rumors
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Backing up Big Data
Solving backup challenges and “protect everything from everywhere,” as we move into the era of big data management and the adoption of BYOD.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.