In a few short years, we’ve moved away from a model where downloading tracks to your computer or mobile device was the method of delivery. Next step: subscription-based, all-you-can-eat streaming music services.
While this model has been available for some time, only recently (with the introduction of lightning fast 4G cell speeds) has it started to make sense for the masses.
Enter Rhapsody …
Here’s Rhapsody’s bite-sized, elevator pitch:
Meet your new music collection complete with millions of songs, entire albums and artist hits spanning the decades. This is more than just internet radio. This is the power to play exactly the songs you want, wherever you are.
Think of a song. Play it instantly.
- All the music you want. $10 a month.
- Connect to the catalog from your computer, through home audio systems, or with mobile apps for iPhone®, iPod touch®, Android™ and BlackBerry®
- Listen to anything and everything in a catalog of over 16 million songs
- Download all you want with the Rhapsody App for iPhone®, iPod touch®, or Android™, as long as you’re a member
- Sign in and start listening. You don’t have to buy songs or manage files.
Depending on your listening style, you’re either a browser or a seeker. Browsers are content to tune in to a radio station or Pandora for example and listen to a particular genre of music. Seekers are more likely to have a specific artist or song in mind they want to listen to *right now*. Rhapsody is a good mix of both, allowing users to search for a specific song or to shuffle entire genres, artists, albums, even Billboard top-XXX lists. Browse their extensive music catalog here.
The Rhapsody service is available on just about any device. We tested it specifically on an iPhone 4 as we believe travelers are most likely to listen on the go. It functions similarly to the iPhone’s native “Music” app, with an almost identical interface and familiar button placement.
Download & Go
If you don’t have an unlimited data plan for your mobile device, you obviously need to be careful with any streaming app. This is particularly true when traveling abroad as international data usage can get very VERY expensive.
Which is why we really dig Rhapsody’s download feature which allows you to (wait for it …) download specific songs you’d like to listen to when a WiFi or cell connection is unavailable. And the best part: there’s no limit.
Pricing & Availability
Not sure if Rhapsody is for you? Check out their 14-day free trial here. Pricing starts as low as $9.17 per month (with a prepaid, annual subscription) and includes unlimited music streaming, the ability to download all the music you want on 1 mobile device, unlimited home audio listening, and (perhaps most importantly) NO advertising.
The Bottom Line
It’s rare that we review a device or service that’s almost completely perfect. That said, we absolutely love Rhapsody. With a fast, well-designed mobile app, dirt cheap subscription cost, and nearly any song you can imagine available at your fingertips, what’s not to like?
Disclosure: Vagabondish.com received a complimentary 6-month Rhapsody trial in advance of this review.