July 27, 2010 | by Andrew Kameka
The list of streaming radio services grows with each passing day, but there are a few hidden gems in the heap, and Grooveshark is one of the lesser-known services worth considering. The company’s $3 per month Android app has one of the most diverse selections, is one of the easiest to use, and has a key strength that not all services have: user-defined playlists to hear songs whenever you want.
I’m very pleased that Grooveshark has a library that bests any service when it comes to music from obscure or lesser known acts. The underground and fringe genres are best represented by Grooveshark, which actually has songs you won’t find on Pandora or Rhapsody. Users also have a great deal of control over those songs. Grooveshark is playlist-driven, so you can search its library – or upload your own music collection – to create a list of Lady Gaga songs and hear it whenever you want. Or you can mark items as a “Favorite” in radio mode and play those songs when you just want to hear the hits.
But Grooveshark is faulty because certain songs are able to playback only in Wi-Fi mode. The lack of 3G playback on Grooveshark’s entire library makes the Android app incredibly flawed and could prove frustrating depending how often the issue arises. I was unable to listen to three songs within a 20 minute span because of this problem.
Grooveshark is great because it plays music on demand, recommends songs in radio mode, and creates playlists that take advantage of its growing music library. Factor in a pristine interface and a monthly membership cost that’s only $3 per month, it almost holds its own against any steaming service. Unfortunately, the Wi-Fi only mode for some songs may prove to be an inconvenience too large to overlook.
- Offline sync for select songs
- On-demand playback of songs or playlists
- Large and diverse song library that is easy to browse or search
- Upload music for increased customization (desktop only)
- Many songs not available to play unless in Wi-Fi
- Duplicates of the same song are commonly listed
Price: Free, but requires $3 per month VIP account