What Is Songza? And Why Is it Rocking the Web?
by Leslie Meredith, TechNewsDaily Senior Writer
June 19 2012 07:00 AM ET
Songza is a New York-based free streaming music website that sits squarely between Pandora and Spotify with pre-made playlists put together by music enthusiasts. No more radio matches like Pandora or building your playlists song by song a la Spotify.
Success depends on how well Songza puts its playlists together, but early results indicate it's a hit.
Downloads have skyrocketed since Songza released an iPad version last week, reaching 1.15 million in the last 10 days. Songza climbed to the top of the iPad free apps chart and sits at No. 2 for iPhone. The company says an Android app should be available "very soon" in the Google Play store. There is also a Kindle Fire app and a Web service at songza.fm, making Songza accessible from most any Internet-connected device.
While there's no shortage of curated playlists on sites such as Rhapsody, Songza organizes its lists by time of day and what you might be doing, under the heading "Concierge." Say it's Monday afternoon and you're having a post-weekend slump, choose "energy boost" and then pick your genre from pop, classic (Songza's take on oldies), dance, rap and rock. Just the names of the playlists should perk you up — try Trans Am Rock with anthems from Led Zeppelin, The Rolling Stones and the Allman Brothers.
You can also search Songza yourself by genre, moods, decades and culture. Recent playlists are displayed on the home menu, but you can save your favorite playlists for easy access in the future.
Songza is just as social as its competitors. As with Spotify, you must have a Facebook account to log in, and the app asks permission to post to your Timeline. If you don't want to flood your friends' newsfeeds with your songs, choose "only me" in your visibility options as you set up your account.
In addition to a comprehensive range of playlists selected from its 18-million track library, Songza has another thing going for it — no audio ads, something you won't find on Pandora or Spotify without paying for the privilege. What's the catch? The only limit is the number of skips per hour (6), but if the playlist producers do their job, that shouldn't be a problem.