Working in IT I try out many services and products. Currently I dabble in a few tech eco-systems. What I’d like is a cloud-based music backup system with both my own music plus other (streamed and cached) music for me to try before I buy.
Here’s some of the equipment I currently use:
Windows Phone (Lumia 800, 720, 925), Windows (7, 8), Visual Studio (2008, 2010, 2012), SkyDrive.
Nexus 7 tablet, Samsung Chromebook, Google Drive.
MacBook Air (2012), Nano (4Gb), Shuffle (original x 2), iCloud.
I have also used a Nexus 4, HTC One and an iPhone 5S over the last year, all of which have been tried in the interests of balance. All have been traded in for Windows Phones (Nexus 4 replaced by Lumia 800, HTC One replaced by Lumia 720 and iPhone 5S replaced by Lumia 925).
I mention these points to be clear that (a) my preference is for Microsoft but (b) I am fair-minded and use the most suitable tools whoever provides them.
When I’m not using the Air, most of my online time is on my Lumia 925 or Nexus 7. In all cases (bar the Nano/Shuffles) the only music system supported across all three ecosystems is Xbox Music. Apple just don’t care about Android (Nexus 7) or Windows Phone. Google provides Google Music on the Nexus 7 but not Windows Phone (there are great third party apps but it isn’t ideal).
So, Xbox Music is the answer for my music needs, right?
Unfortunately not, for two reasons. The obvious one is that (a) there is no facility to upload my own tracks like with Google Play so the stuff I have that is not in their catalogue cannot be handled centrally (I do have such music). The less obvious one is the domain name. It is accessed via music.xbox.com which seems reasonable until you are in a work environment – try telling your network admins you want access to *.xbox.com and see how far you get.
It’s irritating as Google Play Music does everything I need (with the third party WP8 app) but I much prefer Microsoft as a company – I like to buy the product not be the product – so I just wish MS would get a move on and allow music uploads. Until then, Google it is (as per my recent post). Shame.