Music services for mobile phones are enjoying an increasing popularity thanks to the fact that cell phones are replacing standalone MP3 players for many people. MSpot is one of many solutions that has cropped up as a solution for on-the-go listening. The company offers a music cloud service that lets you upload up to 2GB of music for free and access it from any Wi-Fi-capable computer or Android device. (More information on the service here).
As of press time, mSpot for Android is the only mobile app available for the service, and we decided to put it to the test on the HTC Droid Incredible. The app is a quick download and install via the Marketplace, but in order for it to work as advertised, you'll also need to download mSpot's uploader software. That is a light install and won't take up much time or space. However, uploading your library can take a fair amount of time depending on how many songs you want to access.
The mSpot app interface is simple, with four tabs lining the top of the screen: one each for playlist, album, artists, and songs. In addition to any playlists you have saved on the mSpot Web server, the first tab also includes a Quick List that you can add to on the fly. The other tabs are self-explanatory, but it's worth mentioning that there's a handy "shuffle all" function at the top of the song list.
MSpot's playback screen is also quite standard and straightforward. Album art sits dead center and can be magnified to fill up more than half the screen with a single tap. However, this will hide additional functionality, such as shuffle and repeat options and the playback timer (a quick tap will shrink the art right back down, though). The currently playing track name is in large font at the top of the screen with smaller artist and album info written below it. Controls for playing/pausing music and shuttling through tracks line the bottom of the screen and are very responsive on the Droid.
As can be expected from over-the-air streaming, audio quality isn't spectacular. And the fact that mSpot further compresses any files that you upload certainly doesn't help matters. So, no, this is not the best option for an audiophile. But if you're looking for a way to easily access your music on the go--especially if you're the type who often forgets to sync new music to your device--this is a nice free solution. Load times for songs is good, and we were met with relatively few glitches during testing.
Listen On the Go. The mobile phone app intelligently masks disruptions in network connectivity and offers a quick and easy-to-use interface. Using progressive download we sync a local copy to your phone, which offers both quick playback and continued play as you go in and out of network coverage.
The user also has control over the phone storage allocated to mSpot, so it won't get in the way of photos or other files you may want to store on the phone. Currently we support Android 2.1 devices, and will soon be adding other smartphones to the service.