Soundwave App Makes Smartphone Song Playlists A Music Discovery Tool

DDublin-based startup Soundwave is on a mission to make music discovery a fun and social experience. Brendan O’ Driscoll, Founder of Soundwave expresses that there are no complicated computer algorithms at work. The app tracks users’ music listening habits and makes that metadata available to other app’s users.


Soundwave interface

Brendan had a brainwave when he saw a Swedish girl walk into a tree as she was so engrossed in the music. He pondered on the possibility of figuring out a method of finding more about that song so that he could share it with his friends. Soon thereafter, Soundwave came out at the NDRC Launchpad program circa May 2012, who has backed them ever since. Brendan also maintains that his dedicated team in Dublin are getting excellent feedback from the locals and established acts in the Irish music scene are on the app, which is encouraging. So, if knowing what friends, celebrities and musicians are listening to in real-time sounds interesting – this app should be on your smartphone asap.

Dotted Music spent some time using a beta preview of the app, courtesy of Soundwave… The welcome screen displays an audiophile with a login screen. Facebook login can be used, as well as default login, for which a new account has to be created with Soundwave – which is free. Coupling that real-time generated meta database with graphic interactivity like drawing on the screen to know what songs are played by which user. The app is designed to be as unintrusive as possible, playing it subtle. The app starts delivering on the go without excessive panels and menus, keeping the overall design very minimal.

Soundwave claims to make playlists matter and takes cues from the real world and not bloggers’ imaginations or friends’ recommendation. The user manual consists of 4 swipeable pages, summarizing the intent of the app and the basic features. The blip at the bottom indexes the position in the manual, keeping it simple and engaging.


Soundwave’s Explore section

The app tracks the songs actually played in the phone’s music player and logs the metadata. The songs would have to be the ones playing through the headphone jack and not just the ones available on the phone. This metadata is shared with other app users who can then listen to the songs in the playlists.

As the app is not yet full blown, the playlists logging does not seem to respond to song plays. However, we could check other app users’ playlists; YouTube pages are opened for the songs if you click them. The Facebook profile, if used, has a separate menu for synchronising metadata. This sort of shared inventory of song plays might just be very useful for the mobile audiophile crowd using their phones as walkmans. YouTube has made sharing video content a dream and Soundwave might just be the messiah of free sharing in the audio realm.

If you are a fan of pixel-perfect UI, sleek graphics and animations, you may not become the biggest fan of this application, but overall – it’s definitely worth taking a look and we will keep an eye on the app.