What would you call a new music app which lets you share music and lists different kinds of music to explore? I’d call it another music discovery app, but weeSPIN co-founder Darius Fong says that’s not the case.
“Discovery is still important, but it is secondary and only important within our social context,” he says. “What’s unique about weeSPIN is that users can have the convenience like Pandora, the fun like Turntable.fm, listening to music together with friends, and the social interactions like Instagram all in one app.”
If you’re looking for a new way to collect and share music with a specific group of early adopter types, weeSPIN may work well. Basically it’s an all in one music app that does some clever things, but on first glance doesn’t break through a score of similar music focused apps already out there.
Here’s what it does.
With new music apps, or any app for that matter, the first thing I’m always hoping for is a clear narrative—what are the reasons I should be using this app over something else. With weeSPIN it’s a little difficult to immediately get a sense of what the app wants to be. Is it more of a radio and listening app or one more dedicated to sharing?
I think part of the confusion comes from the terminology, “re-spin.” It makes sense after sometime with the app, but initially it’s complicated in the vain of being unique. Re-spin referrers to re-sharing a song from someone else, by the way. Otherwise, after a few clicks and poking around, the interface is a one that borrows Instagram’s familiarity with the main buttons along the bottom—there’s not a lot of nuance in that regard.
Besides the first impressions of the visual aspects, clicking a collection of songs will sometimes result is getting a bunch of 30-second samples instead of full songs. You’ll need to connect your premium accounts to get the best experience. The behind-the-scenes licensing issues for the 30-second samples is just part of business of music, but for most people this will likely be something that keeps them opening Pandora for radio-like listening, rather than weeSPIN.
Just like a lot of other social-hinging apps, you really need a group of friends using it to get the full impact. Otherwise you’re left to your own curiosity and strangers to find new music.
Along the bottom row you’ll find an “explore” button which highlights people, locations, and sounds. All of which are excellent choices for discovery if you’re actually willing to put in the time In my experience, the overwhelming nature of music choices, however, results in very little exploring beyond the first few collections. Same thing happens on places like Spotify or Bandcamp.
The killer discovery feature is the ability to find music based on location. I have yet to discover any patterns or see music really change based on location, but with more users I bet that’d be something that will come through more.
There are two main features which make weeSPIN interesting in the social sharing space. The first is content resolution which tries to populate a song for everyone regardless of which siloed service it’s coming from. There’s a lot background work to make sure it can find the same song across different services.
This is great and a really important feature to make sure listeners are on the same page. The downside is that there just aren’t that many services supported yet. From the look of it though, more are on the way.
The second feature which makes for a useful social music app is the ability to comment on tracks. If you have a group of like-minded music lovers all using the app it could be a really cool way to discuss songs. The feature is reminiscent to SoundCloud’s ability to comment on songs, leaving a time stamp next to specific parts.
If you’re looking for yet another music app, weeSPIN is worth the look because it combines a lot of features typically separated across different apps. It’s a new offering which means not every aspect is fully fleshed out or full featured, but already it’s ahead of a lot of other music apps.
There hasn’t been a dedicated music app to be that one spot everyone knows to share music, yet, but weeSPIN has just as good of shot of being it as anything else currently does.
weeSPIN is an iOS that can be downloaded for free in the iTunes App Store.