Music streaming service Spotify has been available on the iPhone for premium subscribers for some time now, but it looks like its supremacy in this area of the market could be challenged by Sony.
This week it announced that it would be launching its own streaming app on Apple devices, called Music Unlimited. This will give users access to over 15 million tracks and the service has been doing the rounds on Android handsets, so it is not a completely untested platform.
The app will be free to download but like Spotify you will need to pay a subscription fee if you want access from your iPhone. There is a free month long trial to new users who want to test out the service to see if it suits them, but after that you will pay a minimum of $3.99 (£2.50) a month for the privilege of access.
For $10 you can get the full blown premium experience, which means that you can enjoy offline playback of songs and the ability to build your own play lists from your iPhone.
Music Unlimited gets new releases added every seven days and premium members will receive early access to these launches, which is another incentive for people to pay full whack for their subscription.
As well as being compatible with the iPhone it will be possible to use the Music Unlimited app on the iPad. However, while Spotify recently released its fully optimised iPad app, you will have to make do with the up scaled iPhone iteration of Music Unlimited on your tablet for the time being.
It will be interesting to see whether Sony is able to make any headway with Music Unlimited, because the music streaming market is still in its early stages and there is no clearly dominant force at the moment, despite the high profile nature of Spotify`s growth.
In other news, iPhone owners in the UK recently got access to an intriguing new application called Orange TVCheck, which is essentially a visual version of music recognition service Shazam. The app cannot actually detect a particular program or film just by being pointed at your TV, but what it does do is emulate this kind of function thanks to its integration with the listings.
As such you can check what you are watching by pointing your iPhone`s camera in the direction of your big screen set and then find out not only what the program is called but also what others are saying about it.
This is possible thanks to social media integration, allowing you to search for tweets and comments from other users which relate to a particular televisual event.
This app shows real promise since it makes the most out of smartphones and the networking tools they offer while also recognising that more and more people are sitting in front of the TV with their handsets at the ready.
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