Spotifitunes (beta) review

You may have missed the recent news that Apple has bought streaming music service Lala. Any geek worth his pen-protector could put those two together and come up with a Spotify rival rumour.

For example, integrate Lala with iTunes, clean up the interface a bit, voila! Spotify is history! But wait a minute. Lala (along with many other streaming music services, such as Pandora, for example) are US only. Spotify is available in the UK and Europe, which more or less does away with that rumour. This is the reason that Spotifitunes is still an exciting launch.

The premise behind it is so simple, you’ll kick yourself for not thinking of it first and getting a loan to set up in business.

Your iTunes library is a standard XML file, which makes it easy to interpret and read. Spotifitunes gives you instructions on finding this file and enables you to upload it to its servers. It then converts that data into three columns with direct links to the Spotify database for artist, album and track. The result? Your iTunes library, ready to listen to in Spotify. Almost.

There are some wrinkles. As regular Spotify users well know, not every artist, album or track can be found on the service, due to licensing issues. Spotifitunes generates a search link rather than querying the database direct, so it doesn’t clean out false positives.

The interface could also do with a bit of sprucing up – it looks dated already. Maybe that’s a bit of a churlish observation given that this is a young, beta service; little more than a mash-up really. But even with this interface, it’s a a very cool mash-up.

OUR VERDICT

With streaming music integration in iTunes still a rumour - and global licensing issues likely to make that a long way off – Spotifitunes is a solid gold idea in need of a bit of polish. You hear that, venture capitalists? Give these chaps a bucket-load of money.

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