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If you are like me, you want your life to stay in sync. If you are like me in this other way, much of your life is contained or spent using electronic devices such as but not limited to:

  • iPhone
  • iPad
  • Macbook Air
  • PC
  • Apple TV

An important aspect of using these devices (which I do all day and night) is they play music. Whether it streams it, plays downloaded songs, or makes it, they all do it and there are a few different sources it comes from.

Since I was 11 or 12 years old I have pirated, downloaded, torrented, stolen, whatever you want to call it in order to collect anything and everything I have ever wanted when it comes to media. The bulk of this media is definitely music. The story goes: torrent, download to external hard drive, install into iTunes, sync to iPhone and iPod, and listen. As long as I have been into collecting music, this has been the way it works. There is no possible way that I was going to pay for 15,000+ songs in iTunes at $1.10+ a song, that comes out to more money than I could ever afford to spend on music alone. The past few years, my music listening practices have turned to other services like Pandora, Soundcloud, Grooveshark, etc, but those are also kind of limited as far as my syncing needs are concerned.

Now there is a new way. Spotify is a music streaming service that offers a little more than the traditional Pandora. Actually a lot more. For free, you can listen to almost any song you can download or hear on iTunes. Built in sharing features makes it almost too easy to share with friends, or anyone you are connected with on multiple social networking sites. Start stations from albums, artist, songs or listen to entire albums. The songs you like are saved into a playlist called, “liked from radio”. The best part is, when viewing an artist by album, I can click and drag entire albums to a playlist much like transferring music from iTunes to a device. From here there lies an option that separates Spotify from the rest. For $10 a month, I can save all of the playlist I make to Spotify. My iPhone, iPad, every computer I use anywhere on the planet, will have access to these playlist. With the flip of a switch in the Spotify app on iOS, the playlist downloads to the device and no longer requires a connection of any kind to play the music. It’s as if I was still pirating music, but I’m not anymore.

No Spotify doesn’t do video, books, and apps like iTunes so I still need to use that for those purposes. Having the ability of listening to the music I want in iTunes, but also explore and become exposed to new music like Pandora, really is a great innovation in my opinion. While pirating music is free, I can’t say I have ever been so proud of it I would boast about it. Paying $10 may not be enough to support the artist that make the music but it’s a small enough amount of money for something that I use for about 5 hours a day. That comes out to 6.6 cents a day. I’ll end on that note.