For a while now, one of the most expected iOS apps was official support for Google Music on Apple’s handheld devices. Even though this application was promised more than six months ago, many users were forced into using the web interface to access this streaming service. As you might have noticed, this application finally reached the iOS App Store, so in this article we’ll be taking a look at Google Music for iOS.
First, a few words on Google Play Music in case you’re not fully familiar with this service. In its beginnings this was a typical online music store able of storing up to 20,000 of your songs in a cloud. Now you can also use a scanning tool so Google can see other music that you already own on your computer, so you’ll get access to these tracks as well in case Google offers them. You can also use this streaming service simply to listen to the newest tracks, and you can also use Radio to find new music. What you should also know is that you’ll get some basic functionality for free, but in order to fully stream the music and to listen to Google Radio you’ll need to pay $10 per month.
Once I opened Google Play Music I immediately noticed is that this company tried to offer their own visual identity, similar to other Google-designed applications, instead of trying to use iOS aesthetics. This is something that was expected, since it’s clear that this company works very hard on its own image and visual identity. When it comes to Google Play Music, it resembles Google’s own Android app, since you’ll see a lot of white and gray translucent elements, as well as orange bars and buttons which adds a splash of color.
What I didn’t like about this app, when it comes to design, is that none of iOS7 innovations were adopted. You’ll still get to see the old iOS6 keyboard, and the same goes for implemented gesture controls. I was also surprised to see that there’s no dedicated iPad app, especially since we all waited for so long.
When it comes to functionality of Google Play Music for iOS, you’ll be pleasantly surprised. You’ll get all the features that you can normally use like browsing your own library, playing music via Google Radio, or streaming music via Explore feature. You’ll get to use all the features that you can find in its web interface, including creating your own playlists and downloading tracks and albums for offline listening.
What’s also important to say is that this application is compatible with Chromecast, meaning that you can stream your music to a TV. Also, you need to know that Google has done pretty much everything to exclude Apple from its ecosystem, so you won’t be able to make payments or add in-app purchases, but instead you’ll be redirected to Google’s online page which can a bit of a hassle.
I was very happy to see that Google Play Music finally appeared on the iOS App Store, but my excitement dropped after I’ve spent a couple of days using this service. I guess that I expected an amazing application, since we all waited for so long, so I had my hopes up. To be fair, Google Play Music for iOS is still a great application, but there’s a lot of room for improvement.