CNET Editors' review
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.
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All versions:4.0 stars
out of 3 votes
Current version:4.0 stars
out of 3 votes
My rating:Write review
Results 1-3 of 3
"Overall concept is great! Fails big on sound quality..."
Version: mSpot 1.0
Great concept. Great User Interface. I really wanted to like this...
Terrible sound quality. Sounds like a cheap transistor radio (mono) when streaming. Maybe at the gym mSpot would be OK where you don't care about sound quality, but for everyday use you cannot appreciate the quality of your music with this.
Recommend just getting a large SD card for your phone and downloading all your music to that. Or, mSpot...let us upload higher quality music files to your server??? Until mSpot can provide a higher quality level of listening service, I'll just load up my phone. I'm not looking for audiophile quality here...just decent sound to enjoy my music...
"It's surprisingly easy to use"
Version: mSpot 1.0
very easy to get started and it just works.
took me a second there to realize that i had to Click on download first then register after the download when i was on www.mspot.com. i was looking for register button on that main page for a while.
very nice app and the easy set up makes it even better.
"It's like having my iTunes everywhere"
Version: mSpot 1.0
I love iTunes, but I can't take it with me (except on my iPod). Now I can get my iTunes music on my Android and when I'm on different PCs! Yes, slow to get my 1200 songs to mSpot, but finished overnight. Thanks CNET!
* Couldn't find a lot of product information before I downloaded, so had to decide to invest my time (although not much) on faith that I would like this product
* I could fit my 1200 songs at mSpot now, but know I'll need more space later.
While it took some time to send my iTunes songs and playlists to mSpot, it was worth it. Now I can listen to my music on my Android and on any browser. The songs play quickly, and sound good to me. My cover art shows up nicely. I'll have to try this service longer before deciding whether it's worth it to pay extra for the strage beyond the original free 2GB - but all my songs currently fit. Can't complain since it was free!
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