Music streaming services aren’t going anywhere. In fact, in 2 weeks, Apple is getting in to the game. But music streaming services might not be for everyone. They cost around $10 a month, don’t have the highest quality of music, one service never has all the music you need and all the music you’ve bought/collected over the past decade is now useless. Wouldn’t it be great if you could make your own music streaming service that would stream your own music collection no matter what device you were using?
Well, there’s no truly decentralized, user-controlled music streaming service yet. But it’s kind of the idea behind doubleTwists’s new CloudPlayer app that’s “launching on Android first” (iOS version should be tagging along soon?).
doubleTwist CloudPlayer lets you hack your own music streaming service that’s currently limited to Android and the storage space you have on Dropbox/Google Drive. You upload your entire music collection to either/both cloud storage services (which can take a couple of hours to a couple of days), then get the Android app, connect respective accounts and let CloudPlayer do its thing. The app will scan your cloud storage, identify songs and sort them in the app. I tried it with a couple of albums and it worked surprisingly well. But it’s yet to be seen how it handles a library filled with 10,000 songs.
The streaming was almost instant. Just like you’d expect with something like SoundCloud or Spotify. And you can download songs for offline use as well.
Here’s the complete feature list.
- Supports Dropbox, Google Drive and OneDrive.
- Advanced 10 band equalizer with 17 presets and Preamp
- SuperSound™: Customize your sound with headphone enhancement, bass boost and widening effects.
- Support for Lossless file formats such as FLAC and ALAC
- Support for MP3, AAC, OGG, m4a, wav and more
- Chromecast and AirPlay support
- Scrobble to Last.fm
- Small and large widget support
You can try the app for 7 days by logging in with your Google account but after that you’ll have to pay $4.99 using IAP to continue using the cloud features. That means after 7 days, the core features of the app will be disabled and the app will turn into just another local music player.
Of course, CloudPlayer is no streaming service killer, even though doubleTwist’s Jon Lech Johansen makes a really compelling argument against Google Play Music.
But if you’re nerdy enough to take control of your own (currently limited to Android) streaming service, and you have enough free cloud storage accumulated via promotions (I have 71 GB in Dropbox right now), give CloudPlayer a try. If not, you can buy the $1.99/month 100 GB plan from Google Drive and it’ll still cost 5 times less than Spotify (Dropbox doesn’t have such a plan). Hopefully, CloudPlayer clients for iOS and the web aren’t too far away.
But once the music is uploaded to Dropbox, you can use different apps on different platforms to stream your music library. Tunebox is a good iOS alternative to CloudPlayer.