XBOX Music Application for Windows Phone 8.1 Revamp
Honestly, functionally the Layout of the Music Hub was much better than the current app and here is why. The Music Hub had next song preview, navigation to previous and next track with a swipe, share, heart for favorite tracks even though this didn't really work) and a shuffle that exceeded 100 songs.
So in the spirit of that design I'd love it if they
#1 Give us the Store, Collection, History and New Sections back as the entry point of the application. I searched for a lot more music seeing those sections first because i saw what was new in the store, what I've downloaded or added to my collection and what I've been listening to. Basically, having those sections gave me an incentive to search for new music before I started the listening process because I had a good overview of the state of my current collection. Add some badges like foursquare for music heads to thump their chest about. People take great joy in supposedly finding bands and artist so give them something to crow about. Add some achievements that result in free **** for using the XBOX Music Pass. Free T-Shirts, gift cards, music, concert tickets, Posters, Windows Phone accessories like headphones and extra streaming hours. Basically, give me every incentive to get a pass and use it besides I can't do anything in the App without it.
#2 Bring back the now playing section as the second navigation point once I've selected some music to listen to. This layout makes for a much better experience because you can add functionality solely related to playing music like EQ settings, achievements, what friends on Live are listening to, shared playlist, and all manor of social features as part of the Landscape control. Build an ecosystem around the listening experience. Make it personal and communal all at the same time.
#3 Reduce the size of the Header of the Now Playing Landscape control
#4 With the reduced header add the three song next track preview back to the Now playing UI. being able to see what's next up gives me a good incentive to jump back into the store versus wondering if I need to focus on hitting the skip button in the next 2 minutes.
#5 Restore the ability to swipe back and forth on the Art cover as an alternate form of previous and next song navigation. If that's not to your liking, let us use swiping back and forth across the album cover to control song scrubbing like we currently have in mytube. I know this duplicates the functionality of the controls at the bottom, but it reinforces the use of gestures across the entire windows Ecosystem. if you ever want to get rid of the Start Menu permanently, users need to be conditioned to the joys of swiping. Lol
#6 Bring back wireless Local file sync. I know you want to music match my collection but for songs that can't be matched, make it easy for me to get them on my device. It's more of a make the user feel good feature. Next encourage me (notification or pop-up) to take the list of unmatched songs and submit them for review to help expand the music base as the XBox Music team reviews the current catalog.
I think this just about covers my biggest gripes outside of the loading times and stability improvements needed.
There is one thing that is a big NO NO to me when using this app. When trying to switch songs you swipe down or up and the animation to this is very laggy! Personally I rather not have this feature at all and instead swipe to the right or left...but if nothing can be done then at least make the song picture transition smoothly. Thank you!
JUST BRING ZUNE BACK!
eric snyder commented
These are all great suggestions -but you wasted your tome by placing them in this "see how smart I am", all-encompassing post.
The way Uservoice works best is to find One feature at a time you want to add, and the Vote for it. There really is power in numbers. So
. First search for one idea at a time. If you find it, vote it up
. ONLY if you don't, add it.
. repeat for each great idea
Bodhi Lee commented
This is absolutely a must. I can scrape Onedrive for music on pc and tab, I want this capability on my phone. Why is it so difficult? Skymusic can do this, but I want the ability in a core app and unified. This should've been a feature since day one, not four yrs. later like the rest that haven't happened. Also, we need the ability to unmatch the horrible mismatches for metadata and use our own. Please do a better job and more people will recommend your products and services like i'd like to be able to do.
Love everything on this list
This Music App is a HUGE step backwards from the Music hub. Aside from it taking FOREVER to "search for music"...I am also getting a blank black screen when I open it and it takes up to a minute or more to open the app. The DESIGN of the hub was far superior. The "History" section was VERY useful and allowed me to go directly to whatever my current favorite song is immediately. The "New" section was very helpful because it promoted me to investigate and BUY many new songs, and ALL of it was better and more beautifully designed/organized. For that matter, you seem to have made ALL your "Hubs" worse and less beautiful and functional by turning them into apps. what were you thinking???
Ramon Elias commented
You wrote every single thing I wanted too. Thanks
I can relate to your frustrations Andy. if you stream music all day, it's going to have a major impact on the battery. The slowness I'm a bit more forgiving of, because the application is listed as a BETA. officially the Music hub app is the app we should use if we aren't into testing the software for Microsoft.
I would like to see the gapless playback added. The volume fading is almost something that i overlook, so thanks for pointing it out.
Microsoft is going to a bi-weekly update schedule for the Windows Phone XBOX Music App. Hopefully my post and several others will be seen and taken into consideration. I actually thought about the changes I'd really like to see instead of just complaining. I really want a great application and Microsoft wasn't far from it with the music hub. I understand creating a separate application that can be updated outside of the OS, but I'm not sure what led them to ditch the music hub apps design. It was pretty enjoyable. Hopefully they will fix the issues we've identified and create an experience we can all enjoy.
1. All my music is streaming due to no SD card with HTC 8x. XBM app shows NO artists in my online collection. Yes I am a paying xbox music pass subscriber. Synced licenses with my win 8.1 PC. No difference. Set screen timer to never turn off and let my entire collection update (700+ artitst). They all seemed to be there after a few attempts and many hours. But then all vanished and haven't come back after 2 days. Albums are showing up however.
2. Improper volume fading. At every break in a song, the app forces a volume fade up when the song resumes. This is absolutely terrible. The volume fading is already mixed into the song. By forcing the app to apply another fade, the result is volume fading where there shouldn't be one. For example, when a song has a 1 or 2 beat pause then comes back with a strong downbeat, the app forces a volume fade up on the strong downbeat which completely ruins the intention of the song's artist.
3. No gapless playback. This is plain embarrassing. Even the cheapest mp3 player from K Mart will have gapless playback.
4. App is terribly slow! At times I just get a black screen. Sometimes I will see an artist in my collection, exit the app, come back and again there's nothing there.
5. Battery consumption is ridiculous. Drains battery super fast.
6. Did I mention the app is extremely slow! Playlists and other music additions/subtractions don't update for hours after making a change on the PC or XBM website or Xbox.
7. In this state the XBM app is mostly unusable. Terrible.