First impressions of Xbox Music on iOS and Android
One of the things I've been waiting for from Microsoft ever since Windows 8 was released, was their Android and iOS apps for Xbox Music. I was one of what seemed like few people who loved the service from the start and was desperate for the apps so I could use them on my mobile devices, which are not Windows based (hoping to get a W8/RT tablet sometime though). So here are my first impressions.
The first thing I noticed is that it doesn't resemble the W8/RT and WP8 apps at all. The apps closely abide by the design principles of their respective OSes. This isn't necessarily a bad thing. Although, I would've been more than happy to see more or less a carbon copy of the WP8 app, just because I think it's beautifully designed, but it's not the end of the world. The apps of both platforms are easy to navigate, but currently lack any form of offline playback, again, not an issue for me as I have an unlimited data plan, but could be an issue for others not so lucky.
My current devices are an iPhone 4, iPad 2 and an HTC Desire C as my cheap back up phone. Trying the app first on my iPhone and then Desire C, I believed playback began rather slowly and tracks seemed to take a while to begin buffering. However, this is much improved when running the iPhone app on my iPad, so I can only assume the issues on my phones are down to ageing processors. Aside from that, it's been a pleasant experience.
I made a new Microsoft account so I could get another 30 day trial, just so I could sample the apps to see if they were good enough for me to use daily and so far so good. If Microsoft carries on in this direction, I'll happily drop the £8.99 per month with my real account to have Xbox Music available on all my devices.
UPDATE: As Kryptonal mentioned in the comments and as I found out after I wrote this post, the app is also missing an obvious feature in not being able to fast forward or rewind in tracks, I'd imagine, or hope this will come in an update soon.