The World’s Best Free Music Option

Alison Young
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August 24, 2011
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These days, there is no shortage of ways to listen to and organize your music. We have iTunes, Pandora, Rhapsody, Napster, Amazon Cloud Player, Google Music, MOG or Rdio to choose from. And the list goes on. Some services offer songs that are free and legal, but you can’t choose exactly which songs play (i.e., Pandora). Some providers let you download songs for a nominal fee (i.e., iTunes and Amazon) and you own them, while others have you pay a flat monthly fee, but you’re left with nothing after you stop using the service.

After years of negotiations with music companies, the European-made Spotify finally brought its service to the United States. Spotify gives us the golden egg of free, legal, song-specific convenience. The Europeans have been going crazy over Spotify for the last three years, and I’m so glad we now have it too!

Spotify is a polished program similar to iTunes that offers you access to more than 15 million songs with excellent sound quality. With one click, you share your playlists with friends on Twitter or Facebook, or see what they listen to most. The best thing of all, it’s free!


For the first time in Internet history, you can listen to any track, any album, legally, at no charge, with a few restrictions. Once you launch the Spotify software, it automatically recognizes and displays your music collection stored in iTunes library or Windows Media Player. There you can manage your songs and incorporate them into playlists, including songs offered by Spotify.

In Europe, approximately 84 percent of Spotify’s 10 million listeners choose to stick with the free plan, which is what I use. You’ll hear occasional ads and see banner ads in the Spotify software, but it’s bearable. Keep in mind if you stay with the free version, you’ll be limited to 10 hours of free music per month. Additionally, before you can enjoy the free version of Spotify, you need an invitation to join.

If ads annoy you, you can go with the Unlimited $5-per-month plan, which gives you no ads, no limits, and no invitation necessary to join. Or, even better, the Premium $10-per-month plan gives you no ads, no limits, no invitation necessary and the ability to sync to your phone/stream music. Also, the Premium plan allows you to download music to up to three computers or phones, and ready to play back even if you don’t have an Internet connection.

Visit spotify.com to start enjoying this new music experience. It’s also available as a mobile app for your iPhone, Android, Windows 7 device, Palm or Symbian.

 

three star

Click Chick’s Mobile App of the Week: Festivals of Hawaii

If you’re looking for something to do, make sure you download the homegrown Festivals of Hawaii App for your iPhone. The Hawaii Tourism Authority recently launched this app to provide details on more than 100 events throughout the Islands.

“Festivals of Hawaii brings together our residents and visitors to celebrate cultures and traditions in our islands,” says HTA president and CEO Mike McCartney. “This new mobile app is an effective marketing tool that not only delivers helpful information but also shares our unique island experiences and provides a taste of our rich cultural diversity to the world.”


When you launch the app you can select one of the six Hawaiian Islands, and you can search by categories: Hawaiian, Arts & Music, Cuisine, Sports, Ethnic Culture, Agriculture, Education, Nature/EcoTourism, Health/Wellness, Technology and Other. Additionally, you can search by location by hitting the “Near Me” button and it pulls up events closest to you.

Find Festivals of Hawaii for free on the iTunes App Store for your iPhone, iPod touch or iPad.

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