BitTorrent Now..Do we really need another streaming service????
Yesterday BitTorrent came out with a new music streaming service. My first question is, do we really need another music streaming service? For me personally, NO. But there are a lot of people who like multiple who like options.
First, let’s get one thing straight. They are not using their peer-to-peer protocol. This is the same ole’ server configuration. You can go to their website to see more on it here. And two blog post pertaining to this. Here and Here
Now, what makes this different than the other programs, or services out there? Well Now is part of the BitTorrent Bundle Pack. Which is a great way to get music, movies (Film is what BitTorrent refers to that as). One of the very interesting things is that BitTorrent are working with content creators and working on a way to help them actually make more money for their products and ideas.
The cool thing about the Bundle, is that you can choose how much you want to pay for some things. Sure, some items are a set price, but others are available at a price you think you should pay. Which, I have to admit is pretty cool. This not only allows the artist to make some money on the streaming side. (This is due to ad revenue). But, also make money when the album is purchased. I like that idea.
So Byron, why would I want to move to this? Well, unless you love indie music, then you wouldn’t. It doesn’t have the main stream success that Apple, Google, Deezer, Spotify or Pandora/Napster has. But, if you like to support indie artists. And you love to discover new and underground music, well it might just be the place for you.
The look & feel
So i will give BitTorrent credit. Their app is nice looking. One of the good things is that you can get into the app without actually signing up with an email address. Which I have to admit is a nice thing.
So to start off, I went the route of not using my email to sign in. As you can see above, you have three different ways to sign in. And thankfully they have done this right. With some services, I might want to use my gmail account, that I normally use. For others, I might not want to. So kudos to BitTorrent.
Once I was in I was greeted by a simple page with three tabs at the top. Recommended, Trending and Following. There was also a search icon on the right hand side. And the fully looking blue thing on the left, is what you tap to see your profile, if you are signed in.
And just for your knowledge. If you aren’t signed in, then you can’t follow anyone. I can kinda see why, but at the same time, that is just a pain.
So the Recommended tab is exactly what it sounds like. It just recommends music for you. There wasn’t anything fancy like Apple Music or the old Milk Music did, when you chose genres and things of that nature. And then it curated according to that and also what you listened to. I’m not sure if this will change as I listen to more. But, if it doesn’t that that is a #fail right now.
Trending is as you would expect. Stuff that is up and coming. But in this early stage everything is trending. So I think it will take a bit more time for this to actually have more benefit to the user than it does right now.
The following tab, as mentioned above, can only be used if you are signed in. So I went ahead and signed in and then was able to see everything in this tab.
Searching is done very well. With the exception, you can’t search for multiple things. The app only allows you to search one specific style or type of genre.
So tap the search icon, and then you can tap the “type” of music you would like. It will then put that up in the search bar and then curtail the searches based on that ONE thing. Which, I wish you could choose multiple things as well. I might want to listen to Acoustic Electronic Dance music. But with the single only option, I’m stuck with what comes up. Then I have to do the “scroll forever” movement and hope I find something that I like.
One of the neat things, is that you can also search for Movies and Music Videos. This is how it should be. That is why this is part of the Bundle. All things in one place. Here are the pictures of the Music Video and also the Movie.
Now is the quality there. I didn’t really notice it being exceptional. I’m viewing on a Nexus 6, which has a QHD screen, and also on Wi-Fi. So I wouldn’t expect 4K or even UHD. But I’m sure they will stream accordingly to your device and download speeds needs.
On a funny note, they have Hip Hop in there three different ways. “Hip Hop” Hip-Hop” and “HipHop” Why that needs three I have no idea. But I kinda think it’s funny when it is right next to “Glitch” .
So when you click on an artist, then you get to look at his profile page. This gives you some good information.
You can see the album cover, the tracks, you have different choices as to how to share, or buy or listen to. You can follow the artist and also see what albums or other works pertain to this specific artist. All the same stuff you get anywhere else. the one cool thing is the options at the bottom. There are a lot.
Just on this one artist you can do all kinds of things. Facebook, Twitter, go to their website, iTunes, Soundcloud, Google Play, and buy the album direct. So that’s a good thing there. You don’t have to go all over the place to find out about the artist.
To play a track you have to click the picture at the top. Because that is where the Play/Pause button is. Simple enough.
Once you do the actual sign in process, then you the Following tab and also get to do the accounts settings thing. It is pretty much the same standard fair that you have everywhere else.
You have your main profile page with the most recent views, your favorites and also the artists that you are following. Nothing too fancy. If you hit the little cog at the top right hand corner, then you can see all your settings.
Pretty standard fare. Nothing too fancy. Which is actually a good thing.
The Wrap up
So, how is it? Well, not too bad. The sound quality is about what you would expect. It isn’t super exceptional, but isn’t half bad either. The biggest fault I have with it, and this is just because it is new, is that there is just a ton of indie stuff. Stuff you never really want. BUT, at the same time, that is what gives this thing it’s appeal. Some of the best music is indie music. And when I’m on the hunt for something new and refreshing, this will fill that bill very nicely.
There are a few things though that set me off.
- There isn’t a Chromecast option. Even though the app is in the Android store only, there still isn’t that capability. Sure I can cast my phone, but I would rather have a cast option. Just like I do with YouTube or GPAA.
- I found that a lot of times I was getting the “File not found” error when I click on an artist. So yeah..that stinks.
- Video quality was just okay. Nothing special.
- No way to have multiple search types within the same search.
The good things.
- A lot of indie stuff.
- It has movies, music and music videos all together.
- It’s a great way to support indie artists and helps them get paid better.
- Good design and aesthetics.
- Simple and easy. A great thing.
- All good things in one place.
Other than that. It is just another streaming thing. As I said previously, if you like indie stuff, then you are on the right track with this. But if you like the ability to search millions of tracks, then this isn’t the one for you. BitTorrent is off to a good start. And I truly hope that a lot more content creators get on board with this. But for me, I think I will just stick with what I have.