18 September, 2007

Master Your Music Domain

I recently learned about a new beta music service, MediaMaster. MediaMaster provides the ability to upload your music collection and then access it from any PC. In addition, you can stream it to your PC or portable device, such as a cell phone. You have the ability to create playlists and a radio station that others can listen too. You can also create a widget to embed in your website -- choose from recently played to newly added to a playlist. Here's my recently played list -- click the play button to listen.

So far, so good -- looks compelling. Well with the good comes the not so good. I have over 1500 music titles in my collection, and 3 days into it, I am still uploading. I can adjust my upload speed from as little as 100 Kbps to 5,000 Kbps -- it just takes a long time. In addition, the site responds very slowly.

Perhaps because it is still beta or perhaps it's slow because my uploads are being processed, but it is definitely slow. In addition, the find functionality to discover new music from other members of MediaMaster is almost useless. You have the ability to search by username... hmm... how many users reflect their music genre in their name? There are some additional search features accessible from the front page, but there's no link from my MediaMaster Player back to the front page or to the site search functions. Once you get there, the various lists you can create are not too helpful because you do not know what type of music (genre) the user has in their collection.

With that being said, there's a lot of potential, and MediaMaster has other offerings in the works. If you take their survey, you will get a good idea as to what those are. For example a fee version with more features and the ability to download your music back onto your PC (maybe part of the fee version). You can also find out the latest in new features from the MediaMaster blog.

So is it the best music option available today? Not yet -- if you want to discover new music I still believe Last.FM and Pandora are better. If you are looking for an easy way to access your music anywhere, then perhaps, but personally I just use my iPod. Will it have long term success? From what I've seen so far, I see no reason why not -- oh, unless the RIAA gets involved somehow.

One last note, the site demo is buried in the About section, but it's hosted on YouTube here.

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