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Xbox Music
410

5 ways Microsoft can make Xbox Music even better

Make me king of Xbox Music and here's what I'd do

Hold the pitchforks, I'm not talking about the Xbox Music app on Windows Phone. The headline above is about how to make the Xbox Music service better. I don't think I'm too naïve, but Microsoft will eventually make the Windows Phone 8.1 Music app exactly how you want. If there's a feature or two missing you can look to third-party devs to fill that gap with the Xbox Music APIs. Instead let's look at the core service itself and what Microsoft should do to make it compete with the Spotifys and Beats Music of the music streaming world.

1. Make it social

Xbox Music should be connected to your Xbox profile. Or a profile in general. I should be able to see when Daniel makes a new playlist for the gym that he's set as public. And if I want, follow/subscribe to that playlist. But don't stop just at friends. Let me see cool playlists from celebrities and musicians. This is a feature you'll find in streaming services like Beats Music and Spotify.

2. Curated playlists from music experts

Songza is a favorite around the Windows Phone Central crew. While you can select an artist on Xbox Music and start a radio station built around them, it's not the same as the curated playlists you'll find with Songza (and Beats Music). It's hard to explain, but you do notice a difference between the music selection in the curated playlists from experts on Songza vs. those generated by a music algorithm on Xbox Music or Pandora. MixRadio has curated playlists and I'd love to see that team of music experts help Xbox Music out.

3. MY music in the cloud

Google Play Music has a killer feature a lot of you would love on Xbox Music. While Xbox Music does a good job of syncing your playlists in the cloud, it only works when music you're syncing can be matched within the Xbox Music Catalog. Which isn't great when you want to sync some sets you've legally downloaded from something like SoundCloud. I want to sync all my music across all my devices, whether or not it's available in the Xbox Music Catalog. Thankfully an Xbox Music locker service is allegedly on the roadmap. Still, I wanted it yesterday.

4. Better availability around the globe

Top 20 WP Countries

Right now Xbox Music is available in Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom and the United States. Know what's missing? India, Russia and other countries with a high number of Windows Phone users.

We reached out to Alan Mendelevich (@ailon) of AdDuplex and he helped get some quick country stats to give us a rough estimate of how Windows Phone is doing around the globe. Quick disclaimer: Hero apps can affect a country's stats, this dataset was based on 11 global apps and games that served AdDuplex ads yesterday. Around 200,000 users saw them that day. This isn't 110 percent accurate, but a rough estimate of the popularity of Windows Phone around the world. As you can see, we'd love to see countries like India, Russia Thailand and others

5. User uploaded music

SoundCloud is a really great online audio distribution platform. It allows users to upload, record, promote and share any of their originally-created sounds. This is different from a music locker service. You don't upload the new Deadmau5 album to SoundCloud, instead upload your own unique remix of a song from that album. Google has been rumored to buy SoundCloud lately, so it would be killer if Xbox Music had a similar feature.

The ability to upload original music and sounds would play into the improved social aspects of Xbox Music. It would be great to follow an artist like Deadmau5 on Xbox Music and get notified when official album or songs are released through his label. It would be doubly awesome to be able to see mixes he puts up available as well.

Your turn

Those are just some of my ideas on how Xbox Music could be made a whole lot better. Of course those are my ideas and my music priorities are probably a little different from yours. So now I'm curious as to what you'd like to see improved or added feature wise to the core of Xbox Music. Again, not the app, but the Xbox Music service as whole.

Sound off with your suggestions! But don't forget to check out the Xbox Music UserVoice page to 'officially' voice your feedback with Microsoft.

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Reader comments

5 ways Microsoft can make Xbox Music even better

410 Comments

Make Bing Rewards actually useful in buying albums and tracks. 500 points for a $3 gift card is ridiculous. Maybe 50 points per song 250-300 for average sized albums.

Give another search engines giving you anything for searches? $3 for doing what you've been doing for years seems great to me.

You know how many searches it takes to rack up enough points? Heck it would be one thing if they didn't have a daily limit. Bing's market share would probably be at 30-35% right now if that were the case.

No, it wouldn't make a huge difference.

For one thing Bing Rewards is one of those many products and features that Microsoft only offers to the US! US citizens make up about 4% of the global population, so by extrapolation, US tech users *probably* make up about 4% of the global tech user population.

So if 100% of US tech users currently used Bing (which we know they don't!) and tomorrow they all stopped, Bing's market share would only drop by about 4%...

Yea....sorry...that isn't how statistics work.  You are assuming 'global population' would pan out the same as people technically connected?  I mean...you do realize there are millions of people in other countries that don't even have running water... Pretty sure they aren't worried about search engines.

How did you come to that conclusion?!! Bing Rewards is not even in my country yet I've been using it exclusively for more than two years now!!!

It's actually 290(310 without gold status) for $3 and 465(500 without gold status) for $5 and at around 26-41 (depending on your points allowed per day, I get around 41 on mine but wife gets around 26), it doesn't take that long to build points. Been said before but, honestly, you're getting points to get basically free money for something you're doing anyways so why complain.

Yep, its not that hard. I have a good amount of available credits, but my "redeemer" is broken, so I'm just racking up points and saving 'em.

Bing rewards partially brought me over from google, as well as Bing's daily picture. Plus WP, of course.

That wouldn't help make Xboxx Music better globally.. bing Rewards is one of those dumbass USA only 'Features' that Microsoft gives it's Homeboys.. no one else gets anything like them (nor anything search related as good as Bing USA)

Doesn't matter. Fix the fuckn thing first then lets talk bringing back features we lost from fuckn years ago, then maybe we can dream about shit that ain't gonna happen. Pissed

Um, do you realize their comment could easily be applicable to the service?

There are many server side features, like the 'social' integration that are no longer available.

LOL awesome. Yeah basically make it what Zune was. Thanks for writing this though. I feel the service doesn't get enough attention.

Here's the main problem, Microsoft is a SOFTWARE/OS company not a mobile apps company. They keep going wrong by unraveling the OS into apps, the music player and music service were exponentially better when it was part of the OS.

No. When it's part of the OS, they can't do rapid updates and bug fixes because they have to release a full OS update, which has to go through certification from the OEMs and carriers. With it separated, they can release updates "when they're done." 

No. There was nothing wrong with the app in the OS. They had an age to add new features and refine for 8.1 which would have done us for another year and so forth. Its a music player, an essential part of the OS. They fucked up. Are you suggesting they should decouple outlook now because of the benefits of faster update cycles at the expense of performance. Another "No" for you sir

agree, the decoupling has gotten ridiculous. at this rate, half the OS will be third party, and youd have to expect suboptimal performance as a result.

You are kidding right? Read the internet. The has majority of complaints involve MS being too slow. Imagine the howls if they only updated yearly.

I would have said no about 2 weeks ago, but this last update let me know that the standalone ago can be nearly as responsive as the native version. Not AS fast before I get flamed.

Anyways, I'm encouraged and knew that with the 8.1 update they will at least release something much better than what we early adopters have had to deal with.

I want the experience I had with Zune back but I honestly feel like they great us and it's just taking a very long time to code from scratch back up to that... At least I hope that's what it is.

I hope they release an update that makes those apps launch instantaneously. It's been a real bummer watching a splash screen come up then having to wait for content to load up. Feels kind of cheap after using the baked in apps for so long. 8.1 is the first update that I have mixed feelings about.

Yes. The whole experience that bought me to this platform has been compromised so its a real worry. I wish they had stuck to there guns and fleshed out the hubs and kept everything as close to the OS as possible. And what's happened to that dream of skype being fully integrated? Imagine an iMessage equivalent messages hub using skype and allowing 3rd parties to tap into that, whatsapp, viber etc etc. One interface to deal with the lot of them

I was excited for the small tiles and Cortana which are both pretty awesome but most other new improvements are rubbish. People hub social integration doesn't do it for me at all, photo, music and other hubs aren't even hubs anymore(not that most people used hubs to launch other apps anyway). I also miss the offset tiles with the arrow on the side from wp7 lol.

This is my main reason for not planning on updating to 8.1.  I don't care what anyone says, but notification center, additional tile column, or whatever does not beat or compare to the music experience I have now.  35% is my music use.  40% email use.  15% photos.  The other 10% consist of miscellaneous reading, a few games, navigation...  I'll keep my current phone just as is.  When I get a NEW 8.1 device then I'll use the new stuff.  I still use my HTC 4G Radar and I still love the original 7.X feel and look.  One would think if theres an update things should work better.  But MS always takes 2 steps forward and 3 steps back.  That is their MO.

Yep, bottom line is that the music app should just work, be visually stunning and not even need updating. MS invents issues that dont exist for its competition.

No, they were not sending us rapid updates because, to start, they didn't even care updating the goddamn player. A mayor update of the player on every GDR should have been enough, but they were not even planning to update the player.

So true. All this talk about ability to update faster is just excuses for MS just not really giving a shit about the Music app in the first place. Xbox music team seems low on resources.

+9000. ONE way to make Xbox music better, replace it with Zune. Why the hell didn't they just rebrand Zune as Xbox Music?

Transferring songs (or pics /vids) to/from your phone is a nightmare with xbox music. My biggest gripe. And why is it sooooo bad on xbox One? Surely it should be the bees knees in its namesake service? But its worse than in wp. So much for unified software. MS can't even demonstrate this ambition in their own apps. I'm a big Windows everything fan but they're area few chinks and music I'd one of the bigger one

Exactly. Admittedly the interface was a little... Exploratory shall we say. Not the most intuitive, but was beautiful and functional. Fux the usability, add a few bells and whistles to satisfy the socialites and away we go. Zune 3.1 fit for 8.1

Absolutely.  I don't want to listen to my music from the cloud. I don't want a $100 a month data plan.  It is beyond comprehension why Microsoft purposefully disabled Windows Phone 8 from working with the Zune software.  I want to put my music on the phone - easily.  I just spent hours driving through the high desert a couple of days ago; I didn't have cell service, and hence no cloud.  Xbox music has been completely mangled on the OS end.  I don't see renewing a yearly music membership without some serious fixage.

YES!!! That works on W7. About a third of the songs that I bought while using the Zune client aren't available for streaming from the website.

Realize I'm late to this party but yes bring back Zune. The one thing preventing a friend of mine from switching is the horrid experience from Xbox music on Windows 8 he hasn't even seen the client to sync with the phone.

You guys might have asked the wrong group of people this question.  :-/

 

I know MS uses you guys to get an idea of public opinion, and feelings and I think that's great. But it's difficult to get a good opinion when half of them want to complain and the other half want to complain because they don't wanna feel left out by the first half.

Yeah, that's to be expected too when the app is in the condition it is. They've consistently made it worse with each upgrade and there is no real way of sugar coating that.

I think this sort of response is a pretty big clue for Microsoft about where their priorities should be. Not adding new and cool features, but having a stable, smooth app instead.

we have to admit, that WP has no decent music player and there won't be any in near future...

sorry for not reading and going off topic but my point is before trying to add any new feature why won't they just make a decent music player instead of forcing xbox music/terrible experience on us. I understand the purpose of the app is to bring those new features but some of us don't use xbox music and just need a simple native music player that plays music instead of streaming which a lot of us don't have subscription either. So what MS can at least offer us is an option to choose a music app sans xbox music service or something like that...just saying

Something like the old music player wouldn't bother most of us btw...

These are all pretty crap ideas, I hate attempts at making apps like this social, I don't care, I created a fake facebook account because I don't want people seeing the music I listen to!

What it needs is better optimization for speed, that is all it needs other than a couple of small features!

Yeah, curated playlists from music experts, a music locker service and global availability are really crappy ideas huh?

They also need a better ability to play and listen to Xbox Music from your Xbox One/Xbox 360. Including the option to purchase +download songs you like from game soundtracks directly to your Xbox Music collection.

Fake Facebook..? What kinda music are you listening to that would cause you to create a fake account? My guess Probably has Justin Bieber on replay!

Did you read the post? Following musicians and celebrities would be killer. There are a lot of good ideas here that would be great but nobody's reading it

I think you both over estimate how much people care about what celebrities are doing. If it's not some movie or sports event they're starring in then I simply don't care what they're doing or listening to in their free time. Screw this tabloid media.

While I don't care either, lots of people do, so implementing it would be great to satisfy the masses! Build it and they will come.

What masses? this celebrity thing depends on which countries you are in, and those celebrity do they use windows phones, xbox music, do they listern to music e.t.c. 

i think if one is interested to know this information, why don't they get it from somewhere else on net rather than from the xbox just to satisfiy  a few.

And the ability to burn your own CDs!!!! (or at least mp3s). Can't make nix albums anymore to give to a lover. Tragic. Miss Zune. PS heard Xbox music developed by the French. May explain a bit? PPS

I'm not a great fan of celebrity stuff either and really don't want people knowing what I'm listening to and don't give two hoots what someone else is listening to. The only reason the other services have these things is to profile it's users for monetary (marketing/advertising) gain. Grrrrrrr

Do you want VHS support to go along with your cds? How about a gramophone feature? MS FIX THIS FAX MACHINE MUSIC IS HUGE IN MOSAMBIC!!!

 

Just to be clear, the cd died 15 years ago. Time to move on.

now we will get to the point that vinyl also died? mp3 is crap,flac is the thing but still....i just need the option to play my mp3 albums in filename order...no tags playlists syncs etc....

Yeah sure, understand CDs thing of the past, but would still like to be able to create a special playlist that I can share with one person, that's more personal than emailing them a link (not that that's even possible). Call me an old romantic...

Not enough people realize how tarnished the Zune brand name is. MSFT doesn't wanna touch that name anymore. Mostly because of the media and the punch line the name itself is.

No Vista and kinda Windows 8 are tarnished but not all of Windows. Many people love Windows 7 and XP was one of their best most loved OS's ever. Easy to understand easy to troubleshoot. Everyone you knew used it.

Windows as a name is associated with the OS that crashes alot and full of virus, no matter how many times MSFT fixed thru its iterations. Kinda like IE.

So maybe the ones who ridiculed Zune are just Apple and Google fanboys. Sadly it deterred MSFT enough, they misused the Xbox brand and ran it to the ground with Xbox Music snafu.

With Xbox brand on the decline (thanks to Xbox One reveal clusterfuck), it's time to revive the Zune brand from the ashes. After all, baring fanboys and haters, any real owners of Zune treasure that little thing.

Zune was never released outside US... If they would have... I would have bought it instead of iPod...

MS is still on with their US only shite... And now that they are losing Mobile war... They are making even worse decision to put themselves in the ground..

Exactly, MS needs to stop putting everything US first and rest of the world later. Nokia was once the highest phone seller due to global adaptation. If MS wants to succeed in phone buisness, they need to prioritize markets like India, Brazile and EU  

as for me i take widows as the most resilient os as it is attacked from right, centre and all other angles. everyone who writes those virus target windows and its remains standing even though it is receiving these blows. it is easy to use as well. no too many restrictions as well.

I don't think that people are asking for the "Zune" name back but they are asking for a similar desktop client and app. They could rebrand it as Xbox Music.

I know that's exactly what's most logical and should have been done. But as I've said before Microsoft more often than not are the dumbest smart people you'll ever come across.

Great points and also a good exercise, or should I say a hot and personal topic for those of us who became fans of Zune just to lose it during its prime. I'll just grab a six pack, a chair and enjoy the show.

Did you read after the title ? he talked about its service not the app !
and by the way the app is working just fine on my 3 devices

I did read past the title. But even if it had all of those features, it would still be basically unusable. No point in social network integration or whatever when the app doesn't even open 50% of the time...

Make the interface less metro so its more obvious how to select albums from playing song screen. Include options to optimize for Lumia 1520 screen size. Stop it crashing first though. Strongly considering moving to Spotify.

All of those platforms already have official Xbox Music apps, except Windows 7 in which case you can just go to music.xbox.com in your browser and listen to all your music (you can do the same on Mac and Linux too)

Yes, but I can't use Xbox Music on my HTC One w/o paying for an Xbox Music Pass to listen to my own matched music. Also, I can't stream online at work because the music.xbox.com url caught in the corporate filter as "games" (and I recognize that this is a separate issue). 

Simple. I want the music I own to sync to my WP.  I don't want a monthly subscription, don't want social, and I don't want my music on the cloud.

 

Sound like a pretty simple request, but getting my music on my WP confuses the hell out of me.  I'll use my trusty brown Zune till she croaks!

 

Totally agree. This is currently like discussing what CC engine you'd like in the next Honda superbike, when you currently own a rusty BMX push bike with a broken chain and no saddle.

...and whats so hard about plugging in a phone.. openning the phones music folder in windows explorer and dragging the files in there?

... And what's so hard about writing that comment in a letter and mailing it in to us.
Rooting through several sets of nested folders containing mp3's and wma's of varying filename conventions isn't a syncing solution. Media apps work with metadata and so provides a level of abstraction more suited to managing music that windows explorer cant really match. Especially for the masses who don't care about file systems and just want to listen to their music on the device of their choice.

I know how to manually get music on my phone.  Like you said Asskickulater, its not that hard.  What confuses the hell out of me is why MS has no PC programs (Like Zune) to do this.  All MS offers are geared towards subscription services or cloud based music.

 

 

I just want to be able to upload ALL my music to Xbox Music... like Google Play Music does and stream it that way.

Having to match songs is a ball ache, half the time it matches obscure albums or the wrong ones and the OCD in me wants everything neat. A lot of good songs aren't found either despite being listed and its just... ugh! If they fixed that i'd be over the moon.

Can I get an amen! I spent a whole day matching albums, only to turn it back on the next day to find it in a mess again + duplicated

I don't want to upload the music I own. Next they will want to charge me for the storage I've used. Just give me the simplicity I had in Zune where I could update the playlist and it synced over Wi-Fi while I charged

Streamed radio service like TuneIn but with special features on participating stations where you can buy the song you're listening to on a station. Could support streaming radio, digital radio and AM/FM.

How about a family plan? It would be nice if I didn't have to buy another subscription so my wife can listen to my music. Better yet MS should have massive bundle of all their services: Office, music, Xbox etc.

That would be a great idea. I should have included as suggestion number six. Beats Music has a nice family subscription plan.

Why not let it be part of xbox live gold? like prime music.

Posted via Windows Phone Central App because my lumia is being repaired

sure because asv for me i do not stream, data bundles are very expensive here (US1/10MB) no free and contract thing like it is in US. we just play music you have copied to your device.

+1520. I just ditched XBox Music for this reason. Simply letting Xbox music have a separate login screen instead of a tie-in to the phone ID would probably suffice.

I'd at least like it if Xbox Live Gold have me music subscription as well. If you're paying to have Premium access/functionality, it would be good to include music in that

Great point!  I've been wanting this feature as well.  I was able to move music from zune desktop to my wife's HTC 4G and that sufficed.  But having a family plan would be great!  But I'm grandfathered into the $14.99 plan where I download and keep 10 songs per month.  I will never give this up.  It's great to stream music.  But when I hear something I really like.  I just buy it (for free).  Well, I pay an extra $5 per month for that free stuff, but it's way better than paying $9.99 per month and not being able to keep anything. 

 

Therefore, my idea is to bring back the old $14.99 plan (or make it available for those who choose to go that route) and be able to KEEP 10 songs per month.  Or make it a $19.99 family plan and be able to keep 10-15 songs free per month.  :)

THIS!!! Not only am I crazy for paying for this, but I would have to be insane to also pay for my wife to sign up at $20 a month total

I dunno, at this point Xbox music is so broken and behind the competition it honestly is probably just time to give it up.

I say that as a Zune pass owner who ended up transitioning over to Xbox Music and am now looking for another option.

1 and 2 are basically just trying to get back to feature parity with what Zune offered, and I don't have much faith that they're going to be able to actually get anywhere useful, look how long it took to get "cloud collection" even vaguely working, and it's still a giant pile of garbage.

Seriously, just buy someone's better service and rebrand it at this point.

Yep. just want to echo this point. Zune was one of the firsts, if not the first, to introduce curated playlists and social integration.

Like everyone says, the whole mess is worse than Zune 4 yrs ago. They couldve saved a lot of time and ended up with an infinitely better app if theyd simply recoded Zune for WP8 and rebranded it if necessary.

SPEED, please skip the splash screen. Easy navigation. More file support. Do not crash. More market .. Japan. Indie. Really now, the higher ups should listen music or use WP xbox music or read user voices or just commit seppuku! Edit: Music experience on xbox music is not even good. What use of user voice if we still got this kind of experience. So fail.

My sincere apologize. Though, even it is available in japan. It is missing a HUGE list of songs, maybe the same for other market.

sure, this depends on regions. i don't thing we would be able to get a single song from our local singers here in africa in certain countries.

I think what the comments should tell MS is that right now, the app is so bad that even hardcore WP users cant stop complaining about it. It wouldnt even matter if Xbox Music was the best service out there (which it's not even close to being)... the app is so bad that no one can see past that. This is a big deal.

True. As it is also my mistake, just looking at tittle "Music" and "better". As i always listen to music on WP when i work, commuting, take a walk and reading also get a near decent headphone. My emotion takes the better me. Should complain somewhere else.

DaiaX, this is a very good place to voice your frustration. As you can see, many others are frustrated also. I would like to think that WP Central is read and respected by Microsoft managers. Maybe someone is actually taking note of what we say here. Maybe I am too optimistic.

I looked at Xbox service and discussed with my daughter. We have no use for Xbox service. She's a huge fan of Celtic and Irish flute music, Korean girl groups, and Japanese vocaloid music, so I see the absence of music from other cultures here in the US. Microsoft does seem to be very US-centric and that is bad. They don't understand that not everyone wants to listen to American music. And that includes those of us who live in the US.

 

the app is being affected by these services, right now it takes time to load my local music i.e.. music i have saved on my phone, i have no interest in streaming, saving music on cloud etc because i know i won't be playing them from the cloud. here we pay U.S./10MB, no contracts where you are given a lot of free data.

what MS is doing is wrong, its trying to satisfy a small market ( mainly US) by arm twisting the majority of its customers, i think most customers just want a music player which just plays their saved music on the phone without any strings attached (- signing in) just like on android (no third part music apps).

Or they can make another music app. with all those features. If my network is poor i have to wait a minute just before i can play my music?

i don't care about what a celebrity is listening but i care about how my phone performs. MS doesn't have all the music from each country/region, the favorite for the locals in each country as the tastes differs

I like the way the article says even better, could it get much worse?

Seriously rank the following on windows phone -
Spotify, deezer, xbox music .. Be very interested to know what everyone thinks. I'm in uk so no beats music option here.

Id say

1. Spotify
2. Deezer
3. Xbox music

If Spotify had a decent windows 8 metro app id switch in a heart beat

The cloud matching function for your own collection is terrible! A lot of albums get split, or when you have to manually select the album to match, you get this long list of the same album, but with bad cover art, missing tracks etc. I don't know where in the history of Xbox music becoming what it is these albums come from, but a lot of them seem to be user uploaded, rather than albums from record labels.

I also found it doesn't always seem to record the fact that YouTube matched the album, so you end up with 2 versions - the original they matched and the one you matched

This article was more of a "What other services do better than Xbox Music". Not really saying what will make it better, but just stating things other companies have already done to make their apps 'better'. Why not state some hypothetical features that would revolutionise Music apps?

More music catalog just like iTunes. There are so many music, album, or artist that I couldn't find on Xbox music. So I must download it on iTunes. Update your music catalog please......

Thee best way to make Xbox Music better is this:

Lower the price of Xbox Music Pass by at least 69% of what it is now.

At least.

The $10 you pay covers unlimited streaming and downloads plus HD music videos on Xbox. I see nothing wrong with that price.

Once upon a time, RealPlayer had a music service called Rhapsody. It wasn't too expensive and I had an account for years. But when I upgraded my computer to Windows 7, I could never get the DRM to work right and Rhapsody was forever broken for me. Every song in my collection vanished.

Never again will I subscribe to a music service that only allows me to rent my tunes. For the past couple of years, I've used emusic.com. For $15 mo. I could download $16 of music with a) lower prices per title or album than Xbox; and b) those .mp3s were mine to keep. I could burn them to CDs, copy them to my phone, whatever. They offer a wide variety of classic rock and indie titles that I like. I can suspend my account for up to 3 months at a time so I'm not charged for months when I don't buy music.

As for the Xbox app, I haven't had any problem with it as a player. I was able to copy the playlists that I'd created in WMC and that works for me. The only thing it does wonky is the album art. Sometimes the miscues on art are comical. I never knew that Bob Seger's Hollywood Nights was on Vince Guaralen's Oh Good Grief! album, complete with Linus and Snoopy on the cover.

 

No. Fix the goddamn basics. It's a goddamn first party music app, why the hell is it not fast and stable yet? Why? No excuses. All that only follows

Once again, youre missing the point (and so is MS): right now, the app is so bad that no one even cares about the service.

Yes...you were talking about the service...however can you get the message about how pissed off people are about lack of a way for us to listen to our own music on our own phone???? Apple started in music with their iPod that in turn led to the development of their iPhone

I'd agree with a user upload option in lieu of an expanded catalog. On Google's Play Music page, they even say that you can move your iTunes library over to Play Music. There's a number of songs and that I can get on Play Music that I can't get on Xbox Music; rather annoying since I have a grandfathered account with ten free MP3s each month. I rather them offer a free storage offer as Google does this, but I'd even be willing to give up OneDrive storage if it meant I could play the music I already own.

They also need to add the ability to add Networked drives to Libraries. I have about 300GB of mp3s that I would like to be able to access but can't because the network drive can't be indexed

1. Party mode for people to add to the now playing from their phones and desktops (super bonus points for an HTML 5 interface to control a desktop through the cloud.  That way you could turn up and down the volume, add songs, remove songs etc.)  Good for parties and office environments.  Nokia had this for their 4th of July app last year, used a QR code on the screen for the link.  But it should be a permalink option for offices/dorms/public spaces. 
 

2.  Make shuffle work.  With 1,000 songs in a playlist it's still really likes to play the same album over and over not the other 990 songs. 

3. Refine radio feature. I swear it used to actually work pretty well. Don't need human DJs just need it to have an ounce of common sense.  Seems to just play top 40 no matter who you seed it with.  I like top 40 but I don't always want top 40. 

4. Genre Browsing on the desktop and improved search.  I can type in an exact name and it'll often miss it because there is like the word "The" to start with.  Or there is a bunch of terrible music nobody has ever heard of that comes up before the "famous" band. 

5. Cloud play library (mentioned)

I only really disagree with the cloud stuff, data is still expensive in Australia a and my music is all very high quality so I would annihilate my allowed plan pretty quick smart. Not every country is ready for that.

There is also the fact that I have bought the music once, I'll be damned if I'm going to pay a subscription to listen to music I already own.

Stuff you store in your music locker can be downloaded. So you don't have to stream it, but getting music onto a new device would be easier.

Actually that makes it much more agreeable, means I could switch up my music whenever I'm in a WiFi area. And wouldn't have to keep all of my music on my phone.

I take it back, your ideas rock.

Also an Aussie, and I agree, our data is crazy expensive here - but you can opt to only play music on your phone to avoid the streaming when you're not on wifi. They used to have an option about not using mobile data, which meant as soon as you had wifi it would stream. Shame they got rid of that

Everything mentioned in the article Sam would be a great place to start :D. Fortunately I have a fall back in MixRadio when I get annoyed with xbox music but most don't have that luxury.

Sorry those features dont mean much when the app itself is a mess.  One of the buggiest apps i've used, loading loadin gloading loading loading loading loading loading. 

The playlist glitch is annoying, if you add a song to a play list to an existing playlist, it doubles every song on the playlist.  You have to recreate it again, that is annoying. 

 

How bougt when you create a playlist, you can scroll by song (windows phone only) instead of albums, etc.  Annoying. 

Loading loading loading loading loading

Lag lag lag lag lag lag lag lag lag lag lag. 

Glitchy, i understand it is a beta but it is just buggy. 

Im stuck on using xbox music because i have a few years of xbox music subs that i got for like $25 during balck friday last year.  Good deal, i just have to endure the horror that is called the xbox music app. 

"Sorry those features dont mean much when the app itself is a mess."

And if the app was fantastic, fast and awesome but the service sucks, that wouldn't matter? Let's not act like one is more important than the other, they go hand in hand. You folks have already complained, endlessly, about the app. Let's talk about how the service can be better...

I don't think people know "better". They have two settings:

1). Complain/cry mode

2). How come it can't be like [insert competing OS here] mode.

 

Bonus
3). "This is why Microsoft will fail" mode.
 

I don't fall into any of those categories, I realise the trade offs made with the app. Faster updates at the expense of performance.

Anyway, the app isn't what the article is about and I think Sam hit the nail on the head with those five things. I'm one of the lucky few in the UK who remember Zune Social, it would be nice to see that make a comeback.

Better offline support. Sometimes we are not connected and its not always about streaming. Music discovery category or some feature which keeps track of music used in tv shows movies and what not i mean sounds from everywhere commercials even. That would be unique and differentiating.

International... Forget Windows Phone. Xbox music is on the web and on every PC sold with Window 8. It needs to be EVERYWHERE! So don't say it needs to be in countries with lots of (there's a relative term) Windows Phones. It needs to be everywhere!

Yeah, but considering that Offline Playback is not supported on Kit Kat is a little annoying... Plus it would be great to be able to use my Xbox Music Pass with a Sonos setup also...

To load as fast as Zune did. I have less songs on this than my wp7 did and there was never any lag. If this has to do with the cloud then make ANY interaction with that part of the loading process 100% optional. It also freezes after it's been running a while and gets stuck on "resuming..." if you try to open it. Zune never did.

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