So, here’s the story.
A couple of days ago a friend of mine who came #BackToBlack from Windows Phone (he said it was a total mess and sighed with relief once the Z10 was in his hand) asked me an interesting question.
‘How do I get decent music apps on my BlackBerry?’
Now, my friend is not an app junkie. In fact I would go as far as to say that normally the thought of loading any apps at all would turn him off. He just can’t be bothered, and in that he represents a good proportion of phone buyers, believe it or not. They know they are there but don’t know what they should be looking for so don’t really take the time to play around and investigate.
Truth be known, he doesn’t even like computers much.
In short, he’s not a phone nerd like me and there’s more than enough in the stock BB10 OS to cover all his needs. Hub, BBM, Facebook is more then plenty to suit his needs. Until this question, of course.
So, wanting to help him out, I started to look around. He’s on 10.2 and my first thought was the Amazon App Store and Spotify. But that would mean loading it and that’s not his bag at all. Make it seem slightly difficult and it aint happening.
Off to BlackBerry World then and since Nemory has Spo2fy in Beta (no point in giving my technophobe friend a Beta, he’d just get annoyed) let’s see what else is there.
I split my search into 3 categories, radio, videos and music streaming to give him the full range and cover as much as possible!
When BB10 first came out I instinctively went straight to BlackBerry World and donwnloaded the app I’d used on BBOS, Tune In Radio. But then someone suggested Nobex and I was hooked. Beautiful UI, written obviously for native use. Swipes galore but nice and simple. AND when my tiny local radio station wasn’t on the app I emailed the dev and within a few hours it had been added! Great stuff so off on BBM it went.
Whilst Fast Tube and SuperTube are great You Tube apps there’s a gem inside BlackBerry World tucked away just for music videos. Simple and easy to use, StereoTube is a dedicated music video app that is fast and fluid. Being of an (ahem) older persuasion I tested it out by searching for The Specials, ‘Ghost Town’ (both myself and my friend are very much from the Punk/Two Tone era) and there it was, no mess, no fuss. Simplicity alone made this one a big winner.
This was an area in which I needed a bit of help. I was a big fan of Skooday from the early days of BB10 but that had to shut so I had no experience of what else there was around. A quick chat around UTB Towers and I downloaded XTreme Music and gave that a whirl. And very good it is too! Tried out a few tracks and they were all there so I sent that one off too…
There was one other app I wanted to send on. I’ve had Soundhound for a long time now and I find it excellent. Listening to a track and not sure what it’s called or want the lyrics to it? No problem. Fire up Soundhound and it quickly identifies the track and even shows you the lyrics in real time so you can sing along (if you wish to scare some cats). I notice on the reviews a few people saying they’ve had issues but I’ve always found it working perfectly so fo me it’s highly recommended. It COULD do with an update as it was originally integrated into BlackBerry’s music store to allow you to buy the track you are listening to but either way it’s incredibly useful.
So, there’s what I came up with, some great apps, shared to my friend via BBM and he’s delighted! All native, all with great User Interfaces.
Agree, disagree or have a suggestion? Let us know…