1. Talderon's Avatar
    I am a Microsoft Employee, we get no discounts on our XBox Music service, which is ok. I love supporting our company. All app references here are for the WP8 apps unless specified otherwise.

    When the XBox Music app launched, I immediately disliked it. The ONE main feature I use is GONE. Public Playlists. So, here I go creating my own playlists. This is where the real issues came into play.

    1. After adding several tracks to the Playlist (30+), I noticed that the playlist only had 8-10. I could NOT add anymore. I tried the Windows 8.1 app, no dice. I rebooted my phone and killed the desktop app and I was able to add a few more, then poof, it happened again.

    I reported this internally and it's being worked on.

    2. After a few go rounds, I had a playlist that I was happy with, so I hit PLAY! Wait, what do you mean I can't Shuffle/Random? Isn't this a BASIC feature?

    Now, I have to go in and manually "shuffle" them. Disappointment.

    3. The app is slightly clunky. I mean it's nice, but why do I have to hit Back 5 times to exit the app? Yeah, I know I can hold the back button and close it that way, but that's not what I am used too. I don't feel that I should have to go through several screens (some of them the SAME ONES) to exit the app.

    4. The FINAL reason was the cost. I have 5 lines on my AT&T account, and 4 of them are Windows Phone 8 devices (kids and mine). Getting separate accounts for each was costing me $40/mo. I have utility bills that cost less than this per month.

    The move to Beats Music.

    AT&T and Beats Music have teamed up to offer AT&T customers a great deal. Add Beats Music to your account as a service and pay $15/mo for ALL LINES. Savings!!! Every line on your account can use this now (up to 5). The deal gets better. You get 90 Days FREE.

    Ok, with an offer like that, I jumped on it and the wife was happy for saving some cash. $300/year in cash!

    Now, I should have known there was going to be some trouble when I signed up and navigated to their site. The web version of Beats Music is down right HORRIBLE. They could make a horror movie out of it.

    I was counting on the Mobile App to be the saving grace.

    Boy, was I wrong...

    The app experience was just has horrible as the web experience. Why did they make an app that was almost identical to the horrible experience as their site? Just link us to the site and be done with it!

    This app is buggier than an ALPHA version. I am hearing complaints from the Android and IOS versions as well.

    Aside from the poor navigation, when I am playing a downloaded playlist, it will play 1-3 songs and just stop. I have to kick it off again. When I stream the music, same thing happens.

    If I accidently back out of the app (not leaving it running), the music will stop after the current song being played. If I Home Key and leave it running and turn off my screen, there is a 50%-50% chance the song being played will stop.

    Worse yet, turning off the screen with it running in the foreground is no guarantee it will keep playing.

    Ok, enough complaining about the app and site, it's horrible, we know.

    The selection of music is AWESOME! The higher bit rate it streams/downloads is fantastic as well. The music is clear, sharp and good to listen too.

    I love that you can Shuffle and repeat your playlist (Microsoft, Pay Attention HERE!!). I like how you can make it public and others can subscribe to it and play it as well!

    You can follow people, artists and add friends to share things with. It's really a nice integration of Music and Social Media.

    This is what is going to set Beats Music apart from XBox Music, now, if they would only try harder on their apps.

    There is good and bad about both services, however, the absolutely HORRIBLE Web and App experience is turning me and my family off to the Beats Music service, however, we will hang on for our 90 days free to see if things improve (on BOTH sides). If Microsoft would offer a Family Plan AND release the app for the other 2 platforms, they may start something cool. Also, Social Media!!! (Oh yeah... SHUFFLE!!!!)

    Thanks for reading!!

    TL;DR: Both services have good and bad, the Beats Music app/site sucks and XBox Music needs to add Social Media.
    02-13-2014 04:01 PM
  2. Jazmac's Avatar
    I don't have a dog in the fight myself. Xbox music isn't anything like Pandora which I view as the standard. I tried Xbox music and its ok. But then here come Beats and even thought its not quite Pandora, its more "me" than Xbox music. I plan to roll with Beats when I switch to AT&T Next. I use Beats now and I'm pretty pleased with it. I haven't checked the website though but I don't think I'll need it.
    02-13-2014 04:41 PM
  3. deadwrong03's Avatar
    I have subscriptions to both and I don't see how u can say Xbox music is better. Beats has better social features and a better designed app with more functionality, better scrobbling and playlists I can share to Facebook and friends/followers can listen to along with playlists from beats and other people them selves that along with the sound quality trumps Xbox music alone. The saving grace for Xbox music is the phone, tablet and Xbox experience but getting the pass to recognize on your windows phone can be a problem like right now for me I was able to get my phone to recognize it initially but now its not recognizing my pass for atleast a month now and I have a one year subscription totally unacceptable and shameful.

    The beats app is a bit laggy but it just came out once they fix that with updates id glady use it over Xbox music
    02-13-2014 04:51 PM
  4. Curtieson's Avatar
    My knitpick is that you say you spend $40 a month for 4 lines. Why not buy the yearly passes? But I do agree...Beats has a great pricing structure for families.
    02-13-2014 05:38 PM
  5. Talderon's Avatar
    I have subscriptions to both and I don't see how u can say Xbox music is better. Beats has better social features and a better designed app with more functionality, better scrobbling and playlists I can share to Facebook and friends/followers can listen to along with playlists from beats and other people them selves that along with the sound quality trumps Xbox music alone. The saving grace for Xbox music is the phone, tablet and Xbox experience but getting the pass to recognize on your windows phone can be a problem like right now for me I was able to get my phone to recognize it initially but now its not recognizing my pass for atleast a month now and I have a one year subscription totally unacceptable and shameful.

    The beats app is a bit laggy but it just came out once they fix that with updates id glady use it over Xbox music
    Thanks for the reply, however, I don't recall that I said that Xbox was better. They both have good and bad points. I did point out that Microsoft needs to get into the Social connection and ramp up Xbox Music. I agree there. However, on the Beats app, Microsoft's initial release was WAY BETTER than what Beats is offering. It feels like such a rush job that, as I stated, it feels more like an Alpha.

    Microsoft has some catching up to do, Beats has some catching up to do, but there are points where each are ahead and behind.

    I am shooting for Beats mainly because the family deal they offer to AT&T and that the app can only get better from here.
    deadwrong03 likes this.
    02-13-2014 05:39 PM
  6. Talderon's Avatar
    My knitpick is that you say you spend $40 a month for 4 lines. Why not buy the yearly passes? But I do agree...Beats has a great pricing structure for families.
    Yearly passes just came out recently and even with that, it is more expensive than Beats.

    Annual Plan for Xbox Music is $400+ (tax) for 4 lines/year.
    Betas Music for family is only $180/year.

    Microsoft needs to get on the family plan bandwagon.
    02-13-2014 05:43 PM
  7. madthoughts's Avatar
    I just made the switch from XBOX Music to Beats. I'm tired of paying for a service and software that is so painful to use. I used to brag about Zune Pass. I can't fathom why MS jumped back in time so far for a simple re-branding.

    Beats isn't perfect, but so far, for me, it's been a good experience. Plus, the articles coming out about how they plan to pay music makers is nice to hear as well.
    Talderon likes this.
    02-17-2014 10:20 PM

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