We've talked about Simplify Media here before as a great way to listen to music from your friends' iTunes music libraries (Windows and Mac). In fact, Simplify Media was one of our 10 best downloads of 2007. The minute you fire it up, you'll see why--as long as you and your friend both have a free account with Simplify Media, you can stream and listen to each others entire music collections on both Windows and Mac. But, the latest release of Simplify Media for iPhone and iPod Touch lets you take all of that music with you.
To get started, download the app for your personal computer from the links above, register for free with Simplify Media, then grab the iPhone App from the iTunes App Store. Once you're signed in, you're music library should show up in the list as an available stream. It can take a few minutes for the app to scan your directory so don't be surprised if it doesn't work right away. If you already have friends on your account who use Simplify Media their libraries will show up as well. You can add up to 30 friends' libraries to your list, so spread the word to get more music.
Once you're all set up, the iPhone version of Simplify Media will display available libraries on your touch screen, and you'll be able to browse through song lists by genre, artist, and song--just like iTunes. The program also brings up album art for the artist you're listening to, along with artist bios and a lyric sheet for the current song. In our tests, the artist bio and lyrics pages sometimes were only displayed as far as the bottom of the screen, with no option for scrolling down. The program worked almost flawlessly using Wi-Fi, but on 3G it wasn't as reliable and would pause to buffer the stream.
Overall, we really like the concept, but it seems it still needs a little work. For those with reliable Wi-Fi or a strong 3G connection, Simplify Media for iPhone should work great. If you can get your friends on board to register and make their libraries available, this app is a great addition to any music lover who owns an iPhone or iPod Touch.