5 ways Microsoft can make Xbox Music even better

Make me king of Xbox Music and here's what I'd do

Hold the pitchforks, I'm not talking about the Xbox Music app on Windows Phone. The headline above is about how to make the Xbox Music service better. I don't think I'm too naïve, but Microsoft will eventually make the Windows Phone 8.1 Music app exactly how you want. If there's a feature or two missing you can look to third-party devs to fill that gap with the Xbox Music APIs. Instead let's look at the core service itself and what Microsoft should do to make it compete with the Spotifys and Beats Music of the music streaming world.

1. Make it social

Xbox Music should be connected to your Xbox profile. Or a profile in general. I should be able to see when Daniel makes a new playlist for the gym that he's set as public. And if I want, follow/subscribe to that playlist. But don't stop just at friends. Let me see cool playlists from celebrities and musicians. This is a feature you'll find in streaming services like Beats Music and Spotify.

2. Curated playlists from music experts

Songza is a favorite around the Windows Phone Central crew. While you can select an artist on Xbox Music and start a radio station built around them, it's not the same as the curated playlists you'll find with Songza (and Beats Music). It's hard to explain, but you do notice a difference between the music selection in the curated playlists from experts on Songza vs. those generated by a music algorithm on Xbox Music or Pandora. MixRadio has curated playlists and I'd love to see that team of music experts help Xbox Music out.

3. MY music in the cloud

Google Play Music has a killer feature a lot of you would love on Xbox Music. While Xbox Music does a good job of syncing your playlists in the cloud, it only works when music you're syncing can be matched within the Xbox Music Catalog. Which isn't great when you want to sync some sets you've legally downloaded from something like SoundCloud. I want to sync all my music across all my devices, whether or not it's available in the Xbox Music Catalog. Thankfully an Xbox Music locker service is allegedly on the roadmap. Still, I wanted it yesterday.

4. Better availability around the globe

Top 20 WP Countries

Right now Xbox Music is available in Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom and the United States. Know what's missing? India, Russia and other countries with a high number of Windows Phone users.

We reached out to Alan Mendelevich (@ailon) of AdDuplex and he helped get some quick country stats to give us a rough estimate of how Windows Phone is doing around the globe. Quick disclaimer: Hero apps can affect a country's stats, this dataset was based on 11 global apps and games that served AdDuplex ads yesterday. Around 200,000 users saw them that day. This isn't 110 percent accurate, but a rough estimate of the popularity of Windows Phone around the world. As you can see, we'd love to see countries like India, Russia Thailand and others

5. User uploaded music

SoundCloud is a really great online audio distribution platform. It allows users to upload, record, promote and share any of their originally-created sounds. This is different from a music locker service. You don't upload the new Deadmau5 album to SoundCloud, instead upload your own unique remix of a song from that album. Google has been rumored to buy SoundCloud lately, so it would be killer if Xbox Music had a similar feature.

The ability to upload original music and sounds would play into the improved social aspects of Xbox Music. It would be great to follow an artist like Deadmau5 on Xbox Music and get notified when official album or songs are released through his label. It would be doubly awesome to be able to see mixes he puts up available as well.

Your turn

Those are just some of my ideas on how Xbox Music could be made a whole lot better. Of course those are my ideas and my music priorities are probably a little different from yours. So now I'm curious as to what you'd like to see improved or added feature wise to the core of Xbox Music. Again, not the app, but the Xbox Music service as whole.

Sound off with your suggestions! But don't forget to check out the Xbox Music UserVoice page to 'officially' voice your feedback with Microsoft.

  • Xbox Music UserVoice
Sam Sabri
  • Not having it crash
  • Please read.
  • Haha, it seems like no one read here
    they just write comments
  • I wish you could tell them how could they believe that their services are better that's all they need to do
  • Make Bing Rewards actually useful in buying albums and tracks. 500 points for a $3 gift card is ridiculous. Maybe 50 points per song 250-300 for average sized albums.
  • Give another search engines giving you anything for searches? $3 for doing what you've been doing for years seems great to me.
  • You know how many searches it takes to rack up enough points? Heck it would be one thing if they didn't have a daily limit. Bing's market share would probably be at 30-35% right now if that were the case.
  • It's 310 for $3.... And you're getting free stuff... No one else is offering that
  • Plus if it wasn't for Bing Rewards lets be honest most of us would be on Google still. Don't be condescending
  • You might but, most of us are quite happy using Bing.
  • I'm talking about the market. Without Bing Rewards Bing's share would look like WP's.
  • You don't know that so please speak only for yourself.
  • Um yes I do know that Im a MSFT shareholder and I actually read their earnings reports.
  • No, it wouldn't make a huge difference. For one thing Bing Rewards is one of those many products and features that Microsoft only offers to the US! US citizens make up about 4% of the global population, so by extrapolation, US tech users *probably* make up about 4% of the global tech user population. So if 100% of US tech users currently used Bing (which we know they don't!) and tomorrow they all stopped, Bing's market share would only drop by about 4%...
  • Yea....sorry...that isn't how statistics work.  You are assuming 'global population' would pan out the same as people technically connected?  I mean...you do realize there are millions of people in other countries that don't even have running water... Pretty sure they aren't worried about search engines.
  • I use Bing without Bing rewards,I live in India.
  • How did you come to that conclusion?!! Bing Rewards is not even in my country yet I've been using it exclusively for more than two years now!!!
  • It's actually 290(310 without gold status) for $3 and 465(500 without gold status) for $5 and at around 26-41 (depending on your points allowed per day, I get around 41 on mine but wife gets around 26), it doesn't take that long to build points. Been said before but, honestly, you're getting points to get basically free money for something you're doing anyways so why complain.
  • Why complain? Because without points the majority of the market defaults to Google. Heck Google is now a verb for web searching.
  • Yep, its not that hard. I have a good amount of available credits, but my "redeemer" is broken, so I'm just racking up points and saving 'em. Bing rewards partially brought me over from google, as well as Bing's daily picture. Plus WP, of course.
  • Just wait till next Easter.  Our "Redeemer" will be "fixed", do not worry, haha.
  • how do you get 41 credits? R u talking about from last month?
  • That wouldn't help make Xboxx Music better globally.. bing Rewards is one of those dumbass USA only 'Features' that Microsoft gives it's Homeboys.. no one else gets anything like them (nor anything search related as good as Bing USA)
  • Great Idea! Try submitting the idea on Xbox Music UserVoice and Ill definaitly drop a couple of votes!
  • You, sir, are a genius.
  • WHY CAN'T IT READ?!?!?
  • I have read it and it does feels fas... *hyperslap*
  • Doesn't matter. Fix the fuckn thing first then lets talk bringing back features we lost from fuckn years ago, then maybe we can dream about shit that ain't gonna happen. Pissed
  • Once again read before commenting. He is talking about the service, not the app.
  • Um, do you realize their comment could easily be applicable to the service? There are many server side features, like the 'social' integration that are no longer available.
  • LOL awesome. Yeah basically make it what Zune was. Thanks for writing this though. I feel the service doesn't get enough attention.
  • XD I knew this would happen
  • Exactly he wasn't taking about the music app he's talking about Xbox music in general!
  • I'm general, Xbox Music should actually have a good app
  • I agree
  • Just give up
  • Here's the main problem, Microsoft is a SOFTWARE/OS company not a mobile apps company. They keep going wrong by unraveling the OS into apps, the music player and music service were exponentially better when it was part of the OS.
  • No. When it's part of the OS, they can't do rapid updates and bug fixes because they have to release a full OS update, which has to go through certification from the OEMs and carriers. With it separated, they can release updates "when they're done." 
  • No. There was nothing wrong with the app in the OS. They had an age to add new features and refine for 8.1 which would have done us for another year and so forth. Its a music player, an essential part of the OS. They fucked up. Are you suggesting they should decouple outlook now because of the benefits of faster update cycles at the expense of performance. Another "No" for you sir
  • agree, the decoupling has gotten ridiculous. at this rate, half the OS will be third party, and youd have to expect suboptimal performance as a result.
  • You are kidding right? Read the internet. The has majority of complaints involve MS being too slow. Imagine the howls if they only updated yearly.
  • I would have said no about 2 weeks ago, but this last update let me know that the standalone ago can be nearly as responsive as the native version. Not AS fast before I get flamed. Anyways, I'm encouraged and knew that with the 8.1 update they will at least release something much better than what we early adopters have had to deal with. I want the experience I had with Zune back but I honestly feel like they great us and it's just taking a very long time to code from scratch back up to that... At least I hope that's what it is.
  • I hope they release an update that makes those apps launch instantaneously. It's been a real bummer watching a splash screen come up then having to wait for content to load up. Feels kind of cheap after using the baked in apps for so long. 8.1 is the first update that I have mixed feelings about.
  • Yes. The whole experience that bought me to this platform has been compromised so its a real worry. I wish they had stuck to there guns and fleshed out the hubs and kept everything as close to the OS as possible. And what's happened to that dream of skype being fully integrated? Imagine an iMessage equivalent messages hub using skype and allowing 3rd parties to tap into that, whatsapp, viber etc etc. One interface to deal with the lot of them
  • I was excited for the small tiles and Cortana which are both pretty awesome but most other new improvements are rubbish. People hub social integration doesn't do it for me at all, photo, music and other hubs aren't even hubs anymore(not that most people used hubs to launch other apps anyway). I also miss the offset tiles with the arrow on the side from wp7 lol.
  • This is my main reason for not planning on updating to 8.1.  I don't care what anyone says, but notification center, additional tile column, or whatever does not beat or compare to the music experience I have now.  35% is my music use.  40% email use.  15% photos.  The other 10% consist of miscellaneous reading, a few games, navigation...  I'll keep my current phone just as is.  When I get a NEW 8.1 device then I'll use the new stuff.  I still use my HTC 4G Radar and I still love the original 7.X feel and look.  One would think if theres an update things should work better.  But MS always takes 2 steps forward and 3 steps back.  That is their MO.
  • MSFT is the largest OS company in the world stop making excuses that's it's harder for a software company to deal with software.
  • Yep, bottom line is that the music app should just work, be visually stunning and not even need updating. MS invents issues that dont exist for its competition.
  • No, they were not sending us rapid updates because, to start, they didn't even care updating the goddamn player. A mayor update of the player on every GDR should have been enough, but they were not even planning to update the player.
  • So true. All this talk about ability to update faster is just excuses for MS just not really giving a shit about the Music app in the first place. Xbox music team seems low on resources.
  • I want a official music app that work fast and simply
  • Proper desktop client... Like Zune!
  • Yes.
  • I miss Zune for Windows.
  • Me too
  • Me three!
  • Me Four
  • +9000. ONE way to make Xbox music better, replace it with Zune. Why the hell didn't they just rebrand Zune as Xbox Music?
  • I miss wireless sync of my music from desktop to phone
  • Transferring songs (or pics /vids) to/from your phone is a nightmare with xbox music. My biggest gripe. And why is it sooooo bad on xbox One? Surely it should be the bees knees in its namesake service? But its worse than in wp. So much for unified software. MS can't even demonstrate this ambition in their own apps. I'm a big Windows everything fan but they're area few chinks and music I'd one of the bigger one
  • Exactly. Admittedly the interface was a little... Exploratory shall we say. Not the most intuitive, but was beautiful and functional. Fux the usability, add a few bells and whistles to satisfy the socialites and away we go. Zune 3.1 fit for 8.1
  • EXACTLY!! Give us ZUNE-like look and feel.
  • Absolutely.  I don't want to listen to my music from the cloud. I don't want a $100 a month data plan.  It is beyond comprehension why Microsoft purposefully disabled Windows Phone 8 from working with the Zune software.  I want to put my music on the phone - easily.  I just spent hours driving through the high desert a couple of days ago; I didn't have cell service, and hence no cloud.  Xbox music has been completely mangled on the OS end.  I don't see renewing a yearly music membership without some serious fixage.
  • YES!!! That works on W7. About a third of the songs that I bought while using the Zune client aren't available for streaming from the website.
  • Realize I'm late to this party but yes bring back Zune. The one thing preventing a friend of mine from switching is the horrid experience from Xbox music on Windows 8 he hasn't even seen the client to sync with the phone.
  • I really like the sound cloud idea. Hadnt thought of that!
  • How about make it faster
  • You want the service faster? That makes no sense, I don't think you're very good at this.
  • You guys might have asked the wrong group of people this question.  :-/   I know MS uses you guys to get an idea of public opinion, and feelings and I think that's great. But it's difficult to get a good opinion when half of them want to complain and the other half want to complain because they don't wanna feel left out by the first half.
  • Yeah, that's to be expected too when the app is in the condition it is. They've consistently made it worse with each upgrade and there is no real way of sugar coating that. I think this sort of response is a pretty big clue for Microsoft about where their priorities should be. Not adding new and cool features, but having a stable, smooth app instead.
  • we have to admit, that WP has no decent music player and there won't be any in near future...
  • sorry for not reading and going off topic but my point is before trying to add any new feature why won't they just make a decent music player instead of forcing xbox music/terrible experience on us. I understand the purpose of the app is to bring those new features but some of us don't use xbox music and just need a simple native music player that plays music instead of streaming which a lot of us don't have subscription either. So what MS can at least offer us is an option to choose a music app sans xbox music service or something like that...just saying Something like the old music player wouldn't bother most of us btw...
  • Add a crossfade option.
  • That would be awesome! And the option to trim a song (so you can shorten an intro that is too long,...)
  • These are all pretty crap ideas, I hate attempts at making apps like this social, I don't care, I created a fake facebook account because I don't want people seeing the music I listen to! What it needs is better optimization for speed, that is all it needs other than a couple of small features!
  • Yeah, curated playlists from music experts, a music locker service and global availability are really crappy ideas huh?
  • They also need a better ability to play and listen to Xbox Music from your Xbox One/Xbox 360. Including the option to purchase +download songs you like from game soundtracks directly to your Xbox Music collection.
  • Fake Facebook..? What kinda music are you listening to that would cause you to create a fake account? My guess Probably has Justin Bieber on replay!
  • hahahaha +820
  • They are if you're never going to use them.
  • Did you read the post? Following musicians and celebrities would be killer. There are a lot of good ideas here that would be great but nobody's reading it
  • I think you both over estimate how much people care about what celebrities are doing. If it's not some movie or sports event they're starring in then I simply don't care what they're doing or listening to in their free time. Screw this tabloid media.
  • While I don't care either, lots of people do, so implementing it would be great to satisfy the masses! Build it and they will come.
  • What masses? this celebrity thing depends on which countries you are in, and those celebrity do they use windows phones, xbox music, do they listern to music e.t.c.  i think if one is interested to know this information, why don't they get it from somewhere else on net rather than from the xbox just to satisfiy  a few.
  • Just bring back Zune, morons.
  • Yeah, zuuune !
  • Bring Zune. Microsoft doesn't need to code more again.
  • And the ability to burn your own CDs!!!! (or at least mp3s). Can't make nix albums anymore to give to a lover. Tragic. Miss Zune. PS heard Xbox music developed by the French. May explain a bit? PPS I'm not a great fan of celebrity stuff either and really don't want people knowing what I'm listening to and don't give two hoots what someone else is listening to. The only reason the other services have these things is to profile it's users for monetary (marketing/advertising) gain. Grrrrrrr
  • Do you want VHS support to go along with your cds? How about a gramophone feature? MS FIX THIS FAX MACHINE MUSIC IS HUGE IN MOSAMBIC!!!   Just to be clear, the cd died 15 years ago. Time to move on.
  • now we will get to the point that vinyl also died? mp3 is crap,flac is the thing but still....i just need the option to play my mp3 albums in filename order...no tags playlists syncs etc....
  • Yeah sure, understand CDs thing of the past, but would still like to be able to create a special playlist that I can share with one person, that's more personal than emailing them a link (not that that's even possible). Call me an old romantic...
  • Not enough people realize how tarnished the Zune brand name is. MSFT doesn't wanna touch that name anymore. Mostly because of the media and the punch line the name itself is.
  • So is Windows and yet they're still using it.
  • No Vista and kinda Windows 8 are tarnished but not all of Windows. Many people love Windows 7 and XP was one of their best most loved OS's ever. Easy to understand easy to troubleshoot. Everyone you knew used it.
  • Windows as a name is associated with the OS that crashes alot and full of virus, no matter how many times MSFT fixed thru its iterations. Kinda like IE.
  • Maybe according to Apple and Google fanboys. To everyone else Windows is the PC standard.
  • So maybe the ones who ridiculed Zune are just Apple and Google fanboys. Sadly it deterred MSFT enough, they misused the Xbox brand and ran it to the ground with Xbox Music snafu. With Xbox brand on the decline (thanks to Xbox One reveal clusterfuck), it's time to revive the Zune brand from the ashes. After all, baring fanboys and haters, any real owners of Zune treasure that little thing.
  • Zune was never released outside US... If they would have... I would have bought it instead of iPod... MS is still on with their US only shite... And now that they are losing Mobile war... They are making even worse decision to put themselves in the ground..
  • Exactly, MS needs to stop putting everything US first and rest of the world later. Nokia was once the highest phone seller due to global adaptation. If MS wants to succeed in phone buisness, they need to prioritize markets like India, Brazile and EU  
  • as for me i take widows as the most resilient os as it is attacked from right, centre and all other angles. everyone who writes those virus target windows and its remains standing even though it is receiving these blows. it is easy to use as well. no too many restrictions as well.
  • People hated Windows XP at first. They called it the Fisher Price OS.
  • I don't think that people are asking for the "Zune" name back but they are asking for a similar desktop client and app. They could rebrand it as Xbox Music.
  • I know that's exactly what's most logical and should have been done. But as I've said before Microsoft more often than not are the dumbest smart people you'll ever come across.
  • ^this. Why didn't they just build on the amazing work they had in Zune and just relaunch and rebrand it Xbox music
  • So call it xbox music but bring back more if the functionality.
  • Zune is / was only 'tarnished' in the US. So bring it back to the world. And let the US keep the Xbox Music mess.
  • Great points and also a good exercise, or should I say a hot and personal topic for those of us who became fans of Zune just to lose it during its prime. I'll just grab a six pack, a chair and enjoy the show.
  • EVEN better?? Its not even good right now. Headline should be: How to make Xbox Music less terrible
  • Exactly
  • Did you read after the title ? he talked about its service not the app !
    and by the way the app is working just fine on my 3 devices
  • You're easy to please then
  • I did read past the title. But even if it had all of those features, it would still be basically unusable. No point in social network integration or whatever when the app doesn't even open 50% of the time...
  • DING!
  • None of these Sam can make Xbox Music a better music player.
  • +920
  • Make the interface less metro so its more obvious how to select albums from playing song screen. Include options to optimize for Lumia 1520 screen size. Stop it crashing first though. Strongly considering moving to Spotify.
  • Cross platform availability, iOS, Android - Windows desktop for Windows 7.
  • All of those platforms already have official Xbox Music apps, except Windows 7 in which case you can just go to music.xbox.com in your browser and listen to all your music (you can do the same on Mac and Linux too)
  • It is available on iOS and Android! Plus on the web.
  • Yes, but I can't use Xbox Music on my HTC One w/o paying for an Xbox Music Pass to listen to my own matched music. Also, I can't stream online at work because the music.xbox.com url caught in the corporate filter as "games" (and I recognize that this is a separate issue). 
  • The website lists almost a third of my music that I bought through the Zune client as "! This is a local song added from another device. It can't be played here." http://jeremy-britton.com/xbox-music.jpg  And on my iPod Touch I get "Due to usage rights, some songs can't be downloaded to this device." http://jeremy-britton.com/xbox-music-ipod.jpg Option 3 would be great if it fixed this problem.
  • Simple. I want the music I own to sync to my WP.  I don't want a monthly subscription, don't want social, and I don't want my music on the cloud.   Sound like a pretty simple request, but getting my music on my WP confuses the hell out of me.  I'll use my trusty brown Zune till she croaks!  
  • Totally agree. This is currently like discussing what CC engine you'd like in the next Honda superbike, when you currently own a rusty BMX push bike with a broken chain and no saddle.
  • ...and whats so hard about plugging in a phone.. openning the phones music folder in windows explorer and dragging the files in there?
  • ... And what's so hard about writing that comment in a letter and mailing it in to us.
    Rooting through several sets of nested folders containing mp3's and wma's of varying filename conventions isn't a syncing solution. Media apps work with metadata and so provides a level of abstraction more suited to managing music that windows explorer cant really match. Especially for the masses who don't care about file systems and just want to listen to their music on the device of their choice.
  • I know how to manually get music on my phone.  Like you said Asskickulater, its not that hard.  What confuses the hell out of me is why MS has no PC programs (Like Zune) to do this.  All MS offers are geared towards subscription services or cloud based music.    
  • Or you can use: Check out "Music Drop" for Windows Phone http://www.windowsphone.com/s?appid=09a12ce5-26ec-4251-b7a1-16216de4c2fb
  • Here here!!!!
  • I just want to be able to upload ALL my music to Xbox Music... like Google Play Music does and stream it that way. Having to match songs is a ball ache, half the time it matches obscure albums or the wrong ones and the OCD in me wants everything neat. A lot of good songs aren't found either despite being listed and its just... ugh! If they fixed that i'd be over the moon.
  • Can I get an amen! I spent a whole day matching albums, only to turn it back on the next day to find it in a mess again + duplicated
  • I don't want to upload the music I own. Next they will want to charge me for the storage I've used. Just give me the simplicity I had in Zune where I could update the playlist and it synced over Wi-Fi while I charged
  • Just give us proper syncing and management of local music collections like we used to have with Zune and WP7. It could even do this via cloud storage/locker if it must, but the music needs to have the option of being local to the portable device, not just streaming. You can even vote for this on uservoice:
  • Option to fix cover art. Posted via Windows Phone Central App
  • Create a new one from scratch.
  • LOL!
  • Most impressive.
  • Streamed radio service like TuneIn but with special features on participating stations where you can buy the song you're listening to on a station. Could support streaming radio, digital radio and AM/FM.
  • Make mixradio team help them, maybe.
  • How about a family plan? It would be nice if I didn't have to buy another subscription so my wife can listen to my music. Better yet MS should have massive bundle of all their services: Office, music, Xbox etc.
  • That would be a great idea. I should have included as suggestion number six. Beats Music has a nice family subscription plan.
  • Why not let it be part of xbox live gold? like prime music. Posted via Windows Phone Central App because my lumia is being repaired
  • sure because asv for me i do not stream, data bundles are very expensive here (US1/10MB) no free and contract thing like it is in US. we just play music you have copied to your device.
  • +1520. I just ditched XBox Music for this reason. Simply letting Xbox music have a separate login screen instead of a tie-in to the phone ID would probably suffice.
  • I'd at least like it if Xbox Live Gold have me music subscription as well. If you're paying to have Premium access/functionality, it would be good to include music in that
  • Great point!  I've been wanting this feature as well.  I was able to move music from zune desktop to my wife's HTC 4G and that sufficed.  But having a family plan would be great!  But I'm grandfathered into the $14.99 plan where I download and keep 10 songs per month.  I will never give this up.  It's great to stream music.  But when I hear something I really like.  I just buy it (for free).  Well, I pay an extra $5 per month for that free stuff, but it's way better than paying $9.99 per month and not being able to keep anything.    Therefore, my idea is to bring back the old $14.99 plan (or make it available for those who choose to go that route) and be able to KEEP 10 songs per month.  Or make it a $19.99 family plan and be able to keep 10-15 songs free per month.  :)
  • This, those 10 song credits a month are the only reason i've keeped my "Zune pass" active all these years.
  • THIS!!! Not only am I crazy for paying for this, but I would have to be insane to also pay for my wife to sign up at $20 a month total
  • Also, go vote for this on the use voice!!!!!!
  • I dunno, at this point Xbox music is so broken and behind the competition it honestly is probably just time to give it up. I say that as a Zune pass owner who ended up transitioning over to Xbox Music and am now looking for another option. 1 and 2 are basically just trying to get back to feature parity with what Zune offered, and I don't have much faith that they're going to be able to actually get anywhere useful, look how long it took to get "cloud collection" even vaguely working, and it's still a giant pile of garbage. Seriously, just buy someone's better service and rebrand it at this point.
  • Yep. just want to echo this point. Zune was one of the firsts, if not the first, to introduce curated playlists and social integration.
  • Like everyone says, the whole mess is worse than Zune 4 yrs ago. They couldve saved a lot of time and ended up with an infinitely better app if theyd simply recoded Zune for WP8 and rebranded it if necessary.
  • SPEED, please skip the splash screen. Easy navigation. More file support. Do not crash. More market .. Japan. Indie. Really now, the higher ups should listen music or use WP xbox music or read user voices or just commit seppuku! Edit: Music experience on xbox music is not even good. What use of user voice if we still got this kind of experience. So fail.
  • We're talking about the service, not the app.
  • My sincere apologize. Though, even it is available in japan. It is missing a HUGE list of songs, maybe the same for other market.
  • sure, this depends on regions. i don't thing we would be able to get a single song from our local singers here in africa in certain countries.
  • I think what the comments should tell MS is that right now, the app is so bad that even hardcore WP users cant stop complaining about it. It wouldnt even matter if Xbox Music was the best service out there (which it's not even close to being)... the app is so bad that no one can see past that. This is a big deal.
  • True. As it is also my mistake, just looking at tittle "Music" and "better". As i always listen to music on WP when i work, commuting, take a walk and reading also get a near decent headphone. My emotion takes the better me. Should complain somewhere else.
  • DaiaX, this is a very good place to voice your frustration. As you can see, many others are frustrated also. I would like to think that WP Central is read and respected by Microsoft managers. Maybe someone is actually taking note of what we say here. Maybe I am too optimistic. I looked at Xbox service and discussed with my daughter. We have no use for Xbox service. She's a huge fan of Celtic and Irish flute music, Korean girl groups, and Japanese vocaloid music, so I see the absence of music from other cultures here in the US. Microsoft does seem to be very US-centric and that is bad. They don't understand that not everyone wants to listen to American music. And that includes those of us who live in the US.  
  • the app is being affected by these services, right now it takes time to load my local music i.e.. music i have saved on my phone, i have no interest in streaming, saving music on cloud etc because i know i won't be playing them from the cloud. here we pay U.S./10MB, no contracts where you are given a lot of free data. what MS is doing is wrong, its trying to satisfy a small market ( mainly US) by arm twisting the majority of its customers, i think most customers just want a music player which just plays their saved music on the phone without any strings attached (- signing in) just like on android (no third part music apps). Or they can make another music app. with all those features. If my network is poor i have to wait a minute just before i can play my music? i don't care about what a celebrity is listening but i care about how my phone performs. MS doesn't have all the music from each country/region, the favorite for the locals in each country as the tastes differs
  • I like the way the article says even better, could it get much worse? Seriously rank the following on windows phone -
    Spotify, deezer, xbox music .. Be very interested to know what everyone thinks. I'm in uk so no beats music option here. Id say 1. Spotify
    2. Deezer
    3. Xbox music If Spotify had a decent windows 8 metro app id switch in a heart beat
  • Since you asked, I think Rdio is best on WP. You can't even use Spotify without a premium account! :D
  • I'll have to try it :D Actually I've been using metro tube quite a bit
  • http://www.windowsphone.com/s?appid=aab4252d-a0e0-df11-a844-00237de2db9e :D
  • Inclusion of podcasts so podcasts can be thrown into a temporary playlist with music and/or other podcasts.
  • The cloud matching function for your own collection is terrible! A lot of albums get split, or when you have to manually select the album to match, you get this long list of the same album, but with bad cover art, missing tracks etc. I don't know where in the history of Xbox music becoming what it is these albums come from, but a lot of them seem to be user uploaded, rather than albums from record labels. I also found it doesn't always seem to record the fact that YouTube matched the album, so you end up with 2 versions - the original they matched and the one you matched
  • This article was more of a "What other services do better than Xbox Music". Not really saying what will make it better, but just stating things other companies have already done to make their apps 'better'. Why not state some hypothetical features that would revolutionise Music apps?
  • More music catalog just like iTunes. There are so many music, album, or artist that I couldn't find on Xbox music. So I must download it on iTunes. Update your music catalog please......
  • Ummmm...when I press a button. I get a response. That would be awesome.
  • Thee best way to make Xbox Music better is this: Lower the price of Xbox Music Pass by at least 69% of what it is now. At least.
  • The $10 you pay covers unlimited streaming and downloads plus HD music videos on Xbox. I see nothing wrong with that price.
  • HD Music videos I am pretty sure are not included, maybe that is because you are gold on Xbox or smth.
  • Once upon a time, RealPlayer had a music service called Rhapsody. It wasn't too expensive and I had an account for years. But when I upgraded my computer to Windows 7, I could never get the DRM to work right and Rhapsody was forever broken for me. Every song in my collection vanished. Never again will I subscribe to a music service that only allows me to rent my tunes. For the past couple of years, I've used emusic.com. For $15 mo. I could download $16 of music with a) lower prices per title or album than Xbox; and b) those .mp3s were mine to keep. I could burn them to CDs, copy them to my phone, whatever. They offer a wide variety of classic rock and indie titles that I like. I can suspend my account for up to 3 months at a time so I'm not charged for months when I don't buy music. As for the Xbox app, I haven't had any problem with it as a player. I was able to copy the playlists that I'd created in WMC and that works for me. The only thing it does wonky is the album art. Sometimes the miscues on art are comical. I never knew that Bob Seger's Hollywood Nights was on Vince Guaralen's Oh Good Grief! album, complete with Linus and Snoopy on the cover.  
  • Make it not crash and make it not lose my place in what I'm playing when I disconnect my headphones!
  • No. Fix the goddamn basics. It's a goddamn first party music app, why the hell is it not fast and stable yet? Why? No excuses. All that only follows
  • Once again, as the article clearly states, we're talking about the service, not the app.
  • Once again, youre missing the point (and so is MS): right now, the app is so bad that no one even cares about the service.
  • Yes...you were talking about the service...however can you get the message about how pissed off people are about lack of a way for us to listen to our own music on our own phone???? Apple started in music with their iPod that in turn led to the development of their iPhone
  • You can say that again!!
  • I'd agree with a user upload option in lieu of an expanded catalog. On Google's Play Music page, they even say that you can move your iTunes library over to Play Music. There's a number of songs and that I can get on Play Music that I can't get on Xbox Music; rather annoying since I have a grandfathered account with ten free MP3s each month. I rather them offer a free storage offer as Google does this, but I'd even be willing to give up OneDrive storage if it meant I could play the music I already own.
  • great ideas, +1
  • I would be great if it worked with Ford Sync via USB . . . If they only knew who made sync . . .
  • They also need to add the ability to add Networked drives to Libraries. I have about 300GB of mp3s that I would like to be able to access but can't because the network drive can't be indexed
  • 1. Party mode for people to add to the now playing from their phones and desktops (super bonus points for an HTML 5 interface to control a desktop through the cloud.  That way you could turn up and down the volume, add songs, remove songs etc.)  Good for parties and office environments.  Nokia had this for their 4th of July app last year, used a QR code on the screen for the link.  But it should be a permalink option for offices/dorms/public spaces. 
      2.  Make shuffle work.  With 1,000 songs in a playlist it's still really likes to play the same album over and over not the other 990 songs.  3. Refine radio feature. I swear it used to actually work pretty well. Don't need human DJs just need it to have an ounce of common sense.  Seems to just play top 40 no matter who you seed it with.  I like top 40 but I don't always want top 40.  4. Genre Browsing on the desktop and improved search.  I can type in an exact name and it'll often miss it because there is like the word "The" to start with.  Or there is a bunch of terrible music nobody has ever heard of that comes up before the "famous" band.  5. Cloud play library (mentioned)
  • I just need MS to make a complete dedicated music player!!! Come on MS!
  • I only really disagree with the cloud stuff, data is still expensive in Australia a and my music is all very high quality so I would annihilate my allowed plan pretty quick smart. Not every country is ready for that. There is also the fact that I have bought the music once, I'll be damned if I'm going to pay a subscription to listen to music I already own.
  • Stuff you store in your music locker can be downloaded. So you don't have to stream it, but getting music onto a new device would be easier.
  • Actually that makes it much more agreeable, means I could switch up my music whenever I'm in a WiFi area. And wouldn't have to keep all of my music on my phone. I take it back, your ideas rock.
  • Also an Aussie, and I agree, our data is crazy expensive here - but you can opt to only play music on your phone to avoid the streaming when you're not on wifi. They used to have an option about not using mobile data, which meant as soon as you had wifi it would stream. Shame they got rid of that
  • Everything mentioned in the article Sam would be a great place to start :D. Fortunately I have a fall back in MixRadio when I get annoyed with xbox music but most don't have that luxury.
  • Sorry those features dont mean much when the app itself is a mess.  One of the buggiest apps i've used, loading loadin gloading loading loading loading loading loading.  The playlist glitch is annoying, if you add a song to a play list to an existing playlist, it doubles every song on the playlist.  You have to recreate it again, that is annoying.    How bougt when you create a playlist, you can scroll by song (windows phone only) instead of albums, etc.  Annoying.  Loading loading loading loading loading Lag lag lag lag lag lag lag lag lag lag lag.  Glitchy, i understand it is a beta but it is just buggy.  Im stuck on using xbox music because i have a few years of xbox music subs that i got for like $25 during balck friday last year.  Good deal, i just have to endure the horror that is called the xbox music app. 
  • "Sorry those features dont mean much when the app itself is a mess."
    And if the app was fantastic, fast and awesome but the service sucks, that wouldn't matter? Let's not act like one is more important than the other, they go hand in hand. You folks have already complained, endlessly, about the app. Let's talk about how the service can be better...
  • I don't think people know "better". They have two settings: 1). Complain/cry mode 2). How come it can't be like [insert competing OS here] mode.   Bonus
    3). "This is why Microsoft will fail" mode.
  • I don't fall into any of those categories, I realise the trade offs made with the app. Faster updates at the expense of performance. Anyway, the app isn't what the article is about and I think Sam hit the nail on the head with those five things. I'm one of the lucky few in the UK who remember Zune Social, it would be nice to see that make a comeback.
  • Better offline support. Sometimes we are not connected and its not always about streaming. Music discovery category or some feature which keeps track of music used in tv shows movies and what not i mean sounds from everywhere commercials even. That would be unique and differentiating.
  • International... Forget Windows Phone. Xbox music is on the web and on every PC sold with Window 8. It needs to be EVERYWHERE! So don't say it needs to be in countries with lots of (there's a relative term) Windows Phones. It needs to be everywhere!
  • It's also on Android and iOS, so the population concentration of smartphone users in general is critical.
  • Yeah, but considering that Offline Playback is not supported on Kit Kat is a little annoying... Plus it would be great to be able to use my Xbox Music Pass with a Sonos setup also...
  • Family pass, allow family to use your account like iphone. Even if pay a little extra.
  • To load as fast as Zune did. I have less songs on this than my wp7 did and there was never any lag. If this has to do with the cloud then make ANY interaction with that part of the loading process 100% optional. It also freezes after it's been running a while and gets stuck on "resuming..." if you try to open it. Zune never did.
  • Zune
  • Ugh... Why can't it be ms that buys soundcloud?! They're missing out on popular services that would be great for growing their ecosystem and reputation.
  • That's a good one, built in Soundcloud support for user created content. That would be a great social feature.
  • 1 Make It Social.
    This was promised in the day one and they completely forgot about that. Hey Microsoft, I'm very good in remember promises!!!!!
  • It would be perfect if Microsoft was to acquire Spotify and SoundCloud then bring it all under one roof with Nokia MixRadio then offer basic features for free to all Windows and Windows Phone users and more advance options to subscribers, this would be perfect.
  • The first two used to exist in Zune. Xbox Music was a step back, both in software and service.
  • Pretty cool Sam! Though I'd also be interested to hear some of your ideas that other services have not yet done; things that could make Xbox Music even more unique.
  • How about I wanted Xbox Music cloud a year ago?
  • I really want the ability to rate songs and smart playlists again
  • - Sync lyrics or at least show them!  
  • Yes please!
  • Maybe using Soundhound?
  • How about not requiring me to have a f#$king music pass to listen to MY music collection on the Xbox.
  • Last.fm support for scrobbling! Love tracking my listening habits through last.fm, add this and I'd ditch Spotify and move over to xbox music...
  • Dang you beat me to it
  • This. Last.fm scrobbling would win me over from Spotify.
  • Native support for Last.fm (known as "Scrobbling") on the web service, and if they're feeling generous, the apps.
  • Xpod Mini. An iPod Mini-type device that allows you to sync music to it and play it without burning your phone battery. Simply require a once-per-month PC sync to update your subscription info. Otherwise, the player will require no connection to play.
  • Use the Xbox music service in a Zune app!
  • I don't use my phone for music, but I want to know the truth about XBM. Then I want everyone to STFU about it.
  • I do miss the social aspect of Zune. So I would love to have that come back to Xbox Music.
  • Put Spotify and MixRadio in a room, throw in a range of alcoholic beverages, no protection and a upcoming scholarship and boom.. Call the result Xbox music!
  • Am I the only one who thinks XB Music UI is awful?
  • Which one, for Xbox 360, Xbox One, Windows 8, iOS or Windows Phone? They are all different.
  • The one for Windows Phone. I actually like Xbox Music on Windows 8
  • No. It's messy. Needs a dedicated playing now screen among other things.
  • You are right. A step backwards. I used to be able to see a list of all media played on my device from Podcasts, to YouTube to music from the player. I should be able to see newly added music, just like apps. I should be able to go to music in the Store, from the Player. I fired up my old Titan and on Windows Phone 7.8 I can still see the last track played including the artist art (Norah Jones, not a bad way to wake up to the screen)
  • These are very interesting ideas. I'd also add one more thing, let me re-download music I've purchased as many times as I need to. Given how many times I upgrade devices the arbitrary limit is just painful and wasn't so obvious to me until I contacted support. Granted they offered me some credits to repurchase a tiny fraction of my collection, but until that moment and the coincidental failure of my NAS, I didn't feel the NEED to put my music in the cloud. We know, on iTunes its a mostly painless process to just re-download purchases. In fact, I now only purchase via itunes :( Oh, perhaps also consider rehiring the folk that designed UI of the pleasant portions of Zune and include a WiFi sync via what ever client they offer with the service.
  • Liked zune & if they could port what they did on the 360(Xbox Music + Video version) then im happy aswell
  • More like 500 ways, lol
  • More advanced features! Even if most people comsume music "simply" as the MS Exec put it, there's lots of core users who don't. Why get rid of song ratings from everyone? Why override songs' genre? Why not allow people to create autoplaylists? It's absolutely maddening how far back they took the service win Xbox Music and how they've done so very little with it in the past couple years.
  • better support for updating album art and artist art
  • make it sync with all my devices, like if im coming home listening to snoop dogg on my phone i want it to continue playing on my computer when i put the phone on the charger and start using the desktop, there should at least be a way to use your phone as a remote control for xbox music on other devices
  • I'd love to see the ability to create radio stations based on genre, not just artist.
  • I want music locker and curated playlists
  • 7 Digital support would be nice for the digital locker. Maybe not curated playlists but how about Smart DJ making a comeback.
  • So MS should acquire Soundcloud rights?
  • I could go for Mixview again. I remember being so amazed at that in Zune.
    Good points Sam. I don't think many people would care for the social part...but I think it could go either way.
    It would be nice if they used an alternative database of music though. It could solve some issues with that some of us are having with artist metadata matching...etc. -or maybe have a collaborative database with another service (mixradio)?
  • Beats music was getting awesome if Xbox music was similar I would subscribe and have free stream option like mixradio . Have best sound for us with high end stereos systems.
  • He said the service, not the app.
  • Amazing article, Sam.
  • A redesign from 0 would be nice
  • Chile, guys. Chile. We are small, but I've seen lots of Lumia s here. And we are sick of getting all of our MS products through unofficial channels.
  • Lads, settle down. Here are the most important improvements required:
    New album notifications - i.e. You 'like' or subscribe to a particular artist and then receive notifications when a new album is released. Preferably an email.
    Catalogue parity with Spotify - I've been forced to subscribe to Spotify also, purely because of numerous missing albums and little annoyances with many that are available but only for out right purchase or for 30 sec previews.
    - stream my mp3 collection from OneDrive. Rumoured to be coming so just make it happen.
  • ITT: People who can't read.
  • One picture show that India is one 2nd no. For windows phone share percentage. Even thought yet 930 available in most of the countries not in India that's very strange to me. Duck you M$!
  • I really like the UI of MixRadio. If they'd just apply the Xbox Music subscription to that app, I'd be happy.
  • +1
  • How about... when I search both on the phone and the online store it has an actual search hierarchy as in.. when i search for something it lists ARTIST then ALBUM then SONG... I shouldn't have to scroll through a bunch of other options that are just songs if I am looking for an artist mainly, so dumb and annoying
  • Someone go find me a dead horse to beat! You can downloaded curated playlists today, but searching for them is pointless. (when i was your age...) we had Zune music, and Zune had channels... that would update weekly. Curated playlists that would update on their own. imagine that. I also remember another little something called the Zune Social...
  • One of the things that originally drew me to Zune way back when was the social tie in with my Xbox profile and the Zune card. I'd love to see that make a comeback.
  • All I want is one place to go to that offers all my music needs, MSFT had that with Zune. I know that was then and this is now, but as a former Zune subscriber it's not easy going from what we had to this. There was music sharing, wireless syncing, Zune social, access to all your music in one place, excellent album art and info, ability to make a now playing playlist and it was an awesome music discovery tool. If Xbox music had these features I would be happy, but we don't, hence the article. I agree that Xbox music will get better, I guess that's why I continue to subscribe to its services.
  • Maybe integrate it with Nokia MixRadio and make it super snappy and fast!
  • The first two were on Zune. Remember channels?
  • My play lists don't get saved, only saves 4 or 6 songs even if I add more, when I open the app again the list goes down :/ I hate that
  • I thought it's happening with only me!
  • Here's one from me; do not integrate Nokia Mix Radio with it. I just subscribed to it, it is great and it would suck if you put it inside of Xbox Music app in WP.
  • Share with other people in my family...
  • Not paying another 10$ a month for my wife!
  • This. Even if they can't use it through the web or phone, let other users on the PC access my music through the Music app.
  • Not sure if this falls under service or app feature but I would love to see something like music drop integrated so I could wirelessly move music between devices!
  • Faster, better search, recommended songs / charts that match sales outside of xbox (almost certain that list never changes and it never corresponds to the chart you hear on the radio), apps that show songs you can play not what you need a subscription to play, consistent ability to re-download songs, the list goes on.
  • I think they're working on #3. I'd like to have more than 4 devices associated with the account. Or maybe make Windows Phone not count toward the device limit... Do iOS and Android count against the limit?
  • +920 for SOCIAL. What a great feature of the OG Zune! I liked seeing what my friends had listened to recently, what they listened to the most, etc. Adding in playlists by my friends would be even better. Also, I'd love if they brought back the badges for playing bands/songs/albums over a certain number of times, and the ability to see how many times I've listened to a song or artist.
  • I think the ui is awful too
  • The metadata is all screwed up! Too many song titles have all kinds of data bits attached to them: "Album Version", "Live", "Remastered"... ... ... Also, many albums are credited tonthe wrong artist, and many artists are listed more than once due to simple misspellings. Its a mess.
  • Have you ever had it delete an explicit song and replace it with the censored version? That seems to happen to me quite a bit. Or it will replace it with some random-ass song that I would never want.
  • I got one how about all music is free to add to the cloud and you get the whole song and you can you can play it on any Xbox windows phone tablet or computer
  • Ok, you could take king. I'll take pope. Check?
  • The Xbox service isn't available in Saudi Arabia & I haven't used it before, so I can't really say ... But they are doing a good job rebuilding the mess they created ... The Live Tile Should be their next priority.
  • I think the biggest drawback of Xbox Music currently in the software on the PC.  It needs to be comprehensive.  You need to be able to rip albums from CDs and you need to be able to effectively manage your music, i.e. edit names of artists, albums, songs and everything in between.  I have b-sides and live recordings that I can't effectively manage and one of them on my software as Barry Manilow.  I DON'T LISTEN TO BARRY MANILOW! I really wish they would just reskin the Zune software or give me the option to use it for syncing all of my music, photos and video.
  • I've never really been a fan of cloud-based music streaming. I'd rather use up my storage than my data, especially when the latter can still get spotty in certain areas which makes it a bit less reliable. That's just me though
  • SONOS INTEGRATION!!!!!!! please please please.... The Rest i could live with...
  • Been working on a Music app for a week and happy to see this post Sam. Between the post and comments it's given me a few more ideas and confirming some of the features I've added\plan to add are headed I the right direction. :)
  • Remove it from my phone, that will be great. Log in, sign up, sign in; NO thanks.
  • With regards to XBM Service but also app related... They need to support linking microsoft accounts within a family to a XBM family account etc.. I've intentionally not updated my nieces 3 lumias to 8.1 because (correct me if I'm wrong) it would replace the beta xbm app which allows signing in. And therefore removing their access to XBM. I set it up so my sister has XBM and my neices have their own microsoft account, but the beta xbm app allows you to sign in. ATT gives you what, 5 users on 10 devices for beats at $15/mo??
  • Number 3 needs to be addressed with both Xbox music and video.... AND NOW
  • Seriously though how shit is Xbox music on windows phone 8.1
  • Wow Sam, you're courageous to embark in this :P To me they should start by making it functional. Then add gapless playback, the possibility for users to decide the backgrounds for each artists. That would 100% do me.
  • I actually don't want any of these features. I don't want anyone knowing what I'm listening to, so I have to turn that feature off on Spotify. I also find that there are a lot of "spam" tracks on SoundCloud, and I actually really like Xbox Music radio song selection. I've also added my own music and they are synced on all of my devices. The only thing I would want is for the Windows Phone app to be faster and more stable.
  • 1 and 2 are essentially "make it like Zune was"  
  • Not a bad thing, really. Bad that it ever went away? Yes. Bad to bring it back? Nope.
  • Social...play counts and Tool!!
  • Sam, everything you refered to in your article had to do with music stored somewhere besides my phone. That requires a generous or Unlimited Data plan in order to listen as much as I do...and probably everyone that took the time to read or respond to this is similar in how much they use their phone to listen to music. I simply want a native music player that will play my local files!  We had that with the Music Hub. Why not separate that from the Xbox Music app and appease both types of listeners? I realize that the person running MS came from the Cloud division and is well aware of the amout of income that could generate...but you should not limit our options so much that we feel as if we are being forced into Streaming music. I will never go there.
  • Third party players do that beautifully while Microsoft gets Xbox Music in line.
  • If you haven't already, you might want to vote for this:
  • Better album art feature and better use of that dull grey background where there is no album art. Too much water dead space on the screen.
  • I'd like to see a website and a Desktop program (or rework the Win8 App) so it does integrate your music in a cloud (why not OneDrive) and synchronizes it over all your devices + is accessible anywhere via browser
  • Making it for all countries exactly for central america
  • What do you mean by 'even' in the headline
  • Definitely improve social and sharing. My Microsoft account is already connected to Facebook, no reason that I shouldn't be able to share activity and songs on Facebook through the app. Auto-sharing like in Spotify too, please. Also should be able to stream songs locally on my WiFi network. If I have songs on my PC, they should show in my phone when I'm home.
  • Bring back 10 free download credits power month. I have it grandfathered from the Zune days, but I can only take advantage on the Zune desktop client.
  • - through out xbox music current design and add something fresh, elegant with beautiful livetile that keeps the last artist on it even if you stop the music - xbox music world wide support with artist background support - recommended mixes by integrating mixradio into xboxmusic - add social experience into it - make faster
  • Fully agree with this thread. Microsoft, make it happen!!!
  • Better management of ID3 tags. The whole xbox music matching is pretty bad, especially for eclectic collections of music.
  • Zune was a great service from the 10 free owned songs per month to the social and sharing experience. Why they seemingly just tossed everything in the bin and rebuilt from the ground up is beyond my comprehension. It seems like Microsoft starts with something great and different from the competition and then goes backwards matching them or worse... falling behind them.  
  • Allow ad-supported unlimited free streaming and I might consider using it at all, otherwise I'll stick to Mix Radio.
  • The reason why XBOX MUSIC lags and sucks for some (not me) is because its REMOVED FROM THE OS AND HAS BECOME AN APP!
    That's why its slow!
  • Dynamic crossfade like sqrsoft for Winamp did/does. I don't understand why there still isn't a single alternative for that, not for any player or platform etc. Thus, nice way to differentiate! Replay gain support, does Xbox Music have that?
  • I am seeing new artist art showing up which indicates to me some background updates to the service itself. However it would sure be nice for the phone app to catch up. One irritating thing is I constantly have to re-set the show artist in the lock screen. These are the minor and not so minor irritants we endure. Hopefully cyan and final update of 8.1 will make a huge difference. Are we close enough for me to start holding my breath?
  • Please just bring back the native player :'(
  • I heartily agree with adding the ability to upload music not found in the Microsoft Store.  About 20% of my  library is not available from the Store (All legally purchased or ripped from CD's.) FWIW, Amazon, Google and Apple all provide this capability. Crossfade and gapless play would also be nice additions.  A Zune like desktop interface would also be wonderful.  
  • Just make a basic music player... No crash , no blank screen, no loading resuming while switching from apps... First these things please
  • Make me faster
  • 1. Do a better job curating the music collections. I often see the same album multiple times when searching through an artist's catalog. Some are foreign issues with different tracks, some are remastered, and sometimes I can't identify any difference between multiple albums. Carry the best version, ditch the rest. 2. I have always liked the review feature of Zune. It is inconsistent with XBox Music - when searching an album on the store via WP 8, the review is available, but once downloaded into the Collection, it's not. It doesn't seem to be available at all on Windows 8.
  • All I want is for Xbox Music to play what is in my playlist (on my phone). With 8.1 preview, Music never realizes (right away) that I synced new music on any of my playlists. I'm not too sure why there is such an issue in the first place.  
  • 1520% on the fourth point! High time Microsoft made its Xbox music enabled worldwide.
  • Regarding the Xbox Music Locker Service This seems to be working for Xbox Music on Windows 8.1. I have music uploaded on my OneDrive and Xbox Music on Windows 8.1 picks it up. I would imagine they will get this to work on Windows Phone as well in due time.
  • They need to fix the issue of when an artist album is taken off their list but its in your collection. You don't know until you try playing it. Tell me when i open up the app!! Give me suggestions for a new album.
  • Xbox Music storage on OneDrive is the main feature I'm begging for. I have a lot of music like the Beatles that are not available on the XBM catalog. It's ridiculous that I have to copy those files over to each device to listen them. Both iTunes and Google play have cloud storage for music. With OneDrive, there is no excuse that MS hasn't added this feature yet.
  • Yeah that's a good point, for me it matches about 50 out of 1500 albums. It would match more if i accepted to change tags so they were wrong but matched the catalogue. Woeful that i have to copy onto every device and a real pain to get stuff onto the WP.
  • 1 word wrap or a ticket tape
    2 lyric support
    3 bigger UI and bigger texts
    4 list what was newly added and what was recently played
    5 multi speed playback, for my audio books
    6 tie into music and audio related apps (hub style)
  • I'm talking about the app and it's bad.
    Why why why?
    What was wrong with the old player?
    Why did Microsoft destroyed a great app ?
  • I don't know why anyone is surprised at the type of comments being posted. This is one of those "wrong-place-wrong-time" articles. This is WP Central and of course almost all the members use Windows Phone. The only thing many of us care about right now is them fixing the god-awful phone app and making syncing between the PC and phone not an absolute mess. That's it. Extra features foe the service? Who cares at this point. We'll never experience it at the snail's pace they are fixing the app. Updates every two weeks sure, but the app is still slower than 8.0, buggy as hell, and syncing your own music with the PC gotten no better. People simply don't care about what cool new features they could add if they can't even get their apps right. This is an article for after they get their crap straight and THEN actually want to make a legitimate push vs Google play, etc.
  • For me, its the basic things that need sorting out.. when they fix these issues, then start adding other features like social etc. For example... it needs to stop screwing up album art on my already owned DRM free mp3's.... files that display properly in xbox music on my surface, W8.1 desktop, WMP and any other music app i use. I started to think it was doing it when it couldn't find a match in the xbox catalogue, but seems to be random. I also need gapless playback... listening to House, Trance or any other mixed music results in a gap between tracks where if played from original cd or on ipod/iphone.... no gap exists. They also need to rethink music match and how it works with the catalogue.. Sometimes it mostly matches an Album minus the first track or two is missing and the track numbers in the catalogue don't match mine... this is probably because the catalogue is based on US versions of albums... sometimes they are different to other regions. Another gripe is how it displays data from tags like album name, track name, artist etc... it only partially displays if the tag has too many characters to display. Why cant it wrap and resize text if necessary? In its current state its a pain finding the right album when they are all the same but volume 1-11 as it doesn't display as far as vol 1-11 and of course its screwed the artwork too so its trial and error. Last gripe and a very serious one is in the last 2 weeks i found gb's of MP3's are appearing in my recycle bin on my tablet or desktop. Today i found 18gb (about 5% of my collection) in the bin... i checked the directory where i keep the music against the backup on my NAS and sure enough 18gb had been removed from the directory. This has happened Three times in the last two weeks. I have no idea why it happens but i do know that all these problems didn't exist with ipod/iphone.. not rocket science, just basic stuff you expect it to handle. /endrant
  • ITT: Most people don't read or comprehend. All good ideas Sam. I personally would love to see IE11 have a built in player. (think foobar)
  • I would like all the additional features that were mentioned in this article. In addition I would like:
    1. the ability to create a playlist with more than 1,000 songs.
    2. A daily update on what changes have occurred to the XBox Music Pass library. Particularly what songs have been removed from it by the publisher and will no longer play
    3. An option to scrub those songs Tha will no longer play from the playlist and perhaps hold them in a special section so that if they are re-instated into the service by the publisher, they can be re-inserted into the playlist.
    4. Better and more aggressive searching within the catalogue for an alternative source of a song when the one you are using is taken away from the XBMP service.
    5. An option to allow a customer to completely block all karaoke versions of a song from their search results
    6. Microsoft offer exceptional incentives to independent labels and indie artists to host their content on the catalogue
    7. Better world music catalogues, so customers can see what is hot in Europe, or the USA or India etc
    8. More statistical information on what I have been listening to this past year, month, week
    9. Better and wider genre options. Deeper sub categories etc
    10. Much more information relating to the DRM rights for a particular song or artist. For example in Australia I can download Tears For Fears to my Windows 8 computer for offline playback, but the DRM will only allow me to stream the same songs on my Windows Phone 8.1. No mention of this restriction is made in the properties section of the downloaded songs, and it should be.
  • Ref dechah:
    Thank you! Those are great ideas for features/functionality.
  • Great ideas, wow, I hope Microsoft takes notice.
  • Make the price varying across the globe like on Spotify...
    Uploaded own music like on google music
    Upload original content like on soundcloud
    Mix and match like on songza and mixradio
    Make channels and be a YouTube for music/voice
    Record and upload like on soundcloud
    Editing capabilities when uploading recorded sounds
    Make it cheap.
  • I recommend bringing back the $14.99 per month plan and to be able to KEEP 10 songs per month.  So if and when you cancel your subscription you'll be able to leave with some music.
  • I can't put my finger on what I dislike about Xbox music. I feel like as a streaming service, it is fine. It isn't much better or worse than the other available options, its just kind of there. The problem is that with every update it becomes more of a streaming service and less of a dedicated music player (which it is also marketed as). WP needs a flawless default (first party) music player and Xbox Music is not it. if you don't agree with me call the support line and the first thing that they will ask is "do you have a subscription".
  • Fix the problems and leave out everything on that list
  • One thing that's annoyed me recently is that you can't reorder the playlists. I have an order I want my playlists in and I can't reorder them on Windows 8.1, WP8.1, or my surface. :(
  • Also, support for download on more than four devices. I have a lot of devices that I use. #sorryNotSorry
  • I see you have a bright future as a project manager.
  • Well, because the app is so bad (crashes, performance, ignores tagging, can't cope with multiple tracks of the same name, hangs, clicking noises, requires phone soft reset every so often, tries to play non-existent tracks (as they can't work out how to update the database in the background) etc. etc) they need to promote the service to me. I won't use the service until they can sort out the delivery of it. And I'm certainly not stumping up cash in the hope that somehow doing so will sort out the delivery of the service. If they fix the access point to the service and give me a month trial for free then I can make a decision on whether to subscribe or not. Currently, it ain't going to happen.
  • I'd really like to see a consistent User Interface across the entire Xbox Music service. Right now we have this ugly design for WP8, a not proper working UI for Windows 8.1 and I don't know about Xbox, but I guess it isn't any better over there. As for features I can't say I really miss something in the service except for the ones listed in the article, I just wish they would pick up the pace and deal with these first, before fixing bugs. You know, when you're replacing a feature across an entire service, you update your apps with that feature as well. I wouldn't make any sense to spend days on fixing a bug or improving a out-of-date design when you can replace it within a week or two.
  • Offline playlists. Like mixradio. In the data cap world we live in this is a must. I know there is local storage, but when its a cloud song and youre watching your data a compressed way to take your music would be cool. Posted via Windows Phone Central App because my lumia is being repaired
  • Ratings and autoplaylists based off of said ratings.
  • Even if app closes or phone restarts, player should remember last played song to continue. Nokia mix radio does this.
  • ok please enlighten me here. it says it's only available for certain countries. does it mean i won't get xbox music when i update my phone to windows phone 8.1 since i am living in the Philippines?????????????????????? if not, then what will i get!??? the old music+videos???
  • How about just a better app lol
  • A family plan...
  • You know what would be great, Nokia mix radio!!! It's the best for downloading!
  • #1, they need an app that actually works. The service is nothing without the apps. #2, they need to add artists. All the time i type something and it's not there.
  • It feels more like an app to me... AS you said noting is going to affect me because i am in India
  • Add .flac support. It's crucial.
  • Introducing song ratings and smart playlists. I like to rate my songs and then make playlists which have all the songs segregated by specific ratings. It's a really helpful feature for managing huge libraries like 2000 songs +. Also smart playlists can also have options for including songs according to different rules say for example songs of a particular artist that have rating 4 stars and above OR songs that have been played more than 40 times and stuff like that
  • And FLAC, OGG and support for other such formats would be really great. Right now I'm using WMA for lossless files and it sounds good but FLAC support can reduce the hassle of converting them to WMA and then copying
  • I stopped using the "Xbox music" service when one of my purchased songs just vanished. Yeah, no thanks, that shut the door on this craptacular "service". Also, this article just sounds like a blatant rip on Spotify and all the other popular services. I guess that suits the new WP agenda--"screw being different, lets just copy everyone else!"
  • Yes, they should add the social sharing and curated playlists. And they could use "Welcome to the Social" as a marketing catch phrase. Or maybe they could call it "Ping." But seriously, those features never gained 'enough' market penetration the first go around. I think the "service" has gotten pretty good. Microsoft is right up there with the top tier services as far as catalog goes (of artists that allow their music to be streamed). The pricing is inline with other services - although some kind of family membership, or subscription bundling would be great. It is available on many platforms (Windows 8, Xbox, Windows Phone, Android, iOS, web). I would like Microsoft to explain what is going on with their music locker plans. They silently placed a music folder on my OneDrive with no explaination. As for the people worried about "their own music," Microsoft designed Xbox Music to be first and foremost a streaming service because that is where the market was shifting to. The idea is you log into a new phone, tablet, computer, friend's computer for the first time and there are your playlists. No cables, syncing, transferring, etc. I like the Xbox brand, but they diluted it with their Music and Video branding strategy. Someone who doesn't have an Xbox may not understand that they could still get the app for their devices. TL:DR - I think the Xbox Music service is as good as other services, unfortunately being as good doesn't matter because of the Microsoft curse - where people ignore their stuff no matter how good it is.
  • We need Xbox music in India.
  • I don't understand why this article excludes the Xbox Music app. The app gives you access to the service (I realize third party developers have access to the API, but this is very recent and the app should be the default introduction to the service). When the article starts with the premise "hold the pitchforks" when referencing the app it acknowledges that the app is universally seen as a failure and I think that's what should be getting publicity so that the push for a better user experience can be driven. When people lament about other people complaining about wanting Zune back or even WP8 Xbox music back they are missing the point that functionality has been completely handicapped with these "updates". The starting point for the app and service should improve on what they already had developed and failed to market, not completely redevelop and miss the target all together. I am a Zune pass subscriber for around five straight years. I complain because it was light years ahead of other music apps, subscription services, and desktop clients and now is the worst feature of Windows phone 8.1. I love Windows phone and metro UI, which was an evolution of Zune. The music experience was the best synching and subscription service I could find. Now my metadata is a mess, the cloud is a mess, synching is near impossible. Making a playlist on a computer with no subscription music is impossible to get on the phone. How in 2014 is that acceptable? I'm looking for a replacement for my Zune pass + 10 credits because the music experience is that bad.
  • Yep, every music article is going to get this treatment because we're all fed up of all the features being removed or broken with every major OS update. How much complaining do we have to do to get heard on this one?
    I just feel sorry for the two developers they must have working on it. They've obviously inherited a monster and have been told to fix it. But it may be that it's just too big a mess for them to sort out and restore what for every other player in this industry are basic features.
  • Wanna make it better? Just burn the damn thing.
  • I want ratings (1-5), dynamic playlists, the ability to stream from OneDrive, and the ability to modify mp3 tags on whatever Im listening to (on the phone or streaming from OneDrive). All that social stuff does very close to nothing for me. It may be great for a 12-year old that doesn't have much musical knowledge, but at 42 I just don't need it
  • Support for MP3 players is needed. To conserve battery, I would rather not listen to music with my phone; plus, it's annoying to have to unpocket the phone just to adjust volume/forward the track. For these reasons, I use a Sansa Clip Zip, which is easily accessible outside my pocket, and Rhapsody, which supports all kinds of MP3 players and has features that would breathe life into Xbox Music (e.g., far more relevant music suggestions, and a social aspect).
  • As mentioned, the Locker feature for our own Music. Years behind in this respect.
  • <rant>Oy vey... this comments section... smh... why won't people take a few minutes to read what they're about to comment? That's the one thing that really annoys me about WPCentral...</rant> All great ideas! Personally, I think global should be front and center; after that: locker, social (with co-op playlists) and indie support. I'd add dynamic playlist streaming (something similar to what Grooveshark has), family plan -already suggested, but this would be great- and curated suggestions. Oh and add-ons to enrich the experience with third-party "apps" (that's more on the app side, but still).
  • I hear what you're trying to do with this article, but i just can't see past the horrible app to even care about the Xbox Music service. In order: Let me sync my own music to my device easily Let me sync my own music to the cloud easily Let me manage my metadata easily Let me tag and rate my music Let me make playlists easily Let me stream lots of new music easily  Recommend relevant music to me Get social Profit! Thats basically it. Until you can do 1 through 5, the service is basically pointless and I'm looking elsewhere.  As far as what I want to see in the service....I think the idea of the "sentance" in Beats is a great idea (the execution is pretty iffy). I usually don't want to stream music by genre, the Pandora/SmartDJ concept of similar artists is better but not great. Trying to suit music to a mood is the gold standard, but it's really hard and honestly I need to be able to create my own tags and moods on songs to make it really useful. The songs that remind me of the beach probably don't remind others of the beach, you know? 
  • All the social and ways of finding new music they had years ago with zune. Chat,fallowing people, Sending messages and sending songs to friends, playcount, discoversing music.Wi-fi sync. I had over half a million playcount when the services ended. I still  have some of my zune friends on xbl. Microsoft have a shit load of developers. All they had to do with copy the same features and added more. Why is it so hard?    Featuers zune had: Mix view - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ajLhKXGkGNo zune social - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=49M5YeLXMCs wireless sync - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IHPiTOM3ItQ One hour video of features - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8j5iZGDeV_0
  • All the social and ways of finding new music they had years ago with zune. Chat, fallowing people, Sending messages and sending songs to friends, play count, discovering music. WI-fi sync. I had over half a million play count when the services ended. I still have some of my zune friends on xbl. Microsoft have a shit load of developers. All they had to do was copy the same features and added more. Why is it so hard?    One hour video of all the zune featuers in this link. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8j5iZGDeV_0  
  • Here's a simple one.  I would like to open XBox music on my phone and look at the new music that came out on Tuesday.  This used to be simple on the old version but the new version will show genres for new music but only the top albums.  Of course if there is a way to do this please let me know.
  • Title itself is wrong, even better? At present the application is no where near usable version. Take off that even word from article please
  • Audiobook support is a must. Remember the position of tracks!
  • I think it's time that Microsoft starts thinking of India! Cause its the 2nd largest platform for the windowsphone. Xbox music here in India sucks wen u compare it with any other device. Microsoft should start Bing rewards and Xbox live for India . If this happens so, then u could see a high growth of windowsphone users
  • All music development should be built around MixRadio going forward and not Xbox Music. It's light years better. Quit putting band aids on Xbox, swallow your pride MS and drop it. MixRadio is better is every way.
  • Sorry, if this is off topic, the reason why everyone is complaining about the app is clear, what's the use of making the service better if the app through which the service accessed ( well, mostly) is itself broke?
  • My phone is still pitifully flawed. The final 8,1 + Cyan + updates to Xbox Music have a tremendous ways to go. Considering they do not even count Zune PMP as  existing anymore, Windows Phone should be the standard. So all the talk about social, etc. etc. is far less important than making the Windows Phone experience ROCK SOLID. This may require the Locker to become real. This means not sputtering between tracks even when playing music ON MY PHONE. This means establishing a database on the device that allows me to go days without "Looking for music..." "Guess we found some..." " Loading, keep your shirt on..."
  • Cover Art display enabling for India.
  • At this point, I'd almost wish Apple made an iTunes app for Windows phone. At least iTunes has the features that are most important to me... Ratings & Smart playlists. In the meantime, I'll gripe online about what Xbox music COULD be... Please help lend your votes to this feature request: "Introduce a user rating system" http://xboxmusic.uservoice.com/forums/209733-xbox-music-suggestion-box/s...
  • Please MS, DON'T make it social !! or keep the choice by the user! :-) I hate that it will log on every time i open up the app; can't it just connect once and save that state for about 24hrs so i can listen to my music even without any Network ?! (In Germany here is the Net not 100% covered!) isn't that much hard to realize i think....
  • I'd be happy if it worked as well as iPods did over a decade a go. Not having gapless playback still after all these years of Windows Phone is a bit of a joke, and the buggy album art and crashes instigated by 8.1 would be laughable if they didn't fill me with murderous rage.
  • Details about the artists as on Nokia MixRadio
  • I wish microsoft make xbox music store available worldwide.
  • Family share plans..
    can I say more?
  • For some of us mobile data is expensive and its so crazy to realize that everytime I open music player and video player a certain fraction of my mobile data is being utilized for offline music in my phone..please Microsoft give us a nice offline music player and video player..i don't need to stream anything at all I got all the music I want already!!
  • Bring the Symbian music player back! That's all we want!
  • +925
  • I'm fairly happy with the XBox Music service as it is.  What I'd like to see is the XBox Video service follow the same pattern - charge me £8/month and let me watch what the hell I like. I'd love to use XBox Video and dump netflix but currently it's just not practical and the "rental" fees are so high that I rarely if ever rent anything, let alone buy.  
  • It should be free with a Gold account
  • I agree with the bit about music gotten from other sources besides xbm.
  • Everybody here complaining about the syncing, and who all wish for a better local experience (as opposed to streaming) please vote for my uservoice request. It's currently approaching 400 votes, but I know there are enough people to get this onto the first page. Let's do it!
  • Hmm. Your ideas will be in consideration.
  • I also wish curated playlist, I went to the gym and wanted some workout playlists, ofc there was nothing there.
    I also want to see a top 100 weekly in different countries, how am I suppose to find new music?
    I need the ability to share my subscription with my wife so that we can both listen music at the same time.
  • I wouldn't even start wishing for service improvement before the end user application is still rubbish. Fix the app, and I'll start wishing
  • How do I delete search history in xbox music collection?
  • Sonos support please !
  • How about a couple of months free with a windows phone ?
  • Get lost windows phone!!!!!! What the hell!! Can't even make a playlist properly!!! Keeps auto shuffling.. Artist pic won't change sometimes even though song changes!! The pause button does not show properly(even if the music pauses or stops, it stays the some sometimes)... I click some song and some other song starts playing(this happens a lot... in the song list, and playlist sometimes)!! What the hell!! Is this a music app or what??? This is like an insult to all music apps and an insult to windows phone!
  • They need to work with more outside partners like Sonos or Samsung. I would like for my Xbox music to be as available as Pandora.
  • I tried Zune out on my dying laptop and never got much of a chance to play with it until I picked up my first Windows Phone and a little more so when the Zune pass made its way to Canada. Unfortunately this was around the time Microsoft was looking to rebrand their entertainment services, which I actually thought was a good idea to use a strong brand as opposed to one that was a joke (brand recognition joke). To the point, I'm not sure as to the services that became severed when the switch happened, I know I miss the ability to like music. I stream all my music from Microsoft currently, partially because there isn't a combination of internal and expandable memory that could handle my collection and because I have only read nightmarish stories of syncing ones own collection, and that means having music I want in a pinch but might not always want to listen to if I hit random/shuffle. Having the option to like a song or unlike a song would allow for a much cleaner more personalized listening experience. It should not stop at liking songs though. I should be able to like a band and when new releases pop up on the service I should be notified and given the option to add the album or individual songs or even cue it up for a listen the next time I launch the app. Notify me when the band is in town for a show, I can't remember what app did this but I thought it was genius. Back to playlists, allow me at the click of a button to switch from parental advisory to radio edit without the need to store multiple albums in my collection. I have the option of plugging my phone in at working and playing music I listen to but it must be work appropriate and I personally don't want to have to sift through and select individual songs when I should be able to select clean versions as an option and the DJ create a list. Finally, and this may get many a laugh, but I actually like hearing seasonal songs depending on the time of year. As another option when randomizing my songs I might want to hear a few Christmas songs ramping up in frequency to Christmas. Mid July I don't feel the urge to crank out some Barenaked for the Holidays but in December it would be fitting. I understand my wish list can be answered by my creating personal playlists, but shouldn't technology provide an option to simplify the tedious and energize the mundane? I chose not to focus so much on the selection of fixes found in the article but strongly agree with the socializing of the experience.
  • As an add on to the above, and not so much to do with the service, changes to their subscription model. I've mentioned it before, and have even seen it in the comments section for this article, but provide either discounts for multiple service subscriptions, Xbox Music + Xbox Live Gold = X% discount, or subscription bundles, Music + Movies + Gold = Entertainment Whore package (granted the name might have to be changed slightly and Microsoft would need to get on creating a Video service to rival YouTube/Netflix/Twitch but I can dream the ridiculous).
  • I don't understand the social aspect.  I couldn't care less what any of my friends are listening to.  They don't determine what music I listen, nor am I influenced by them in the least.  I'm not a lemming.  And for similar reasons I do NOT want curated playlists.  Curated playlists are, again, some ELSE'S idea of what you should listen to.  At least with well-done and often-refined algorithms, I'm essentially curating my own based on what I choose and what's in my collection already.  Now, I totally agree on the "MY music on the cloud" issue.  I have WAY more music that's not in Microsoft's library than music that is, and so I have to turn off the cloud/streaming feature.  I have all my music backed up onto OneDrive anyway, so I can, if needed, play individual tracks.  But what's worse is Xbox--on all platforms--screws with my metadata.  They just need to STOP.  Finally, as for uploading our own music, I just see all sorts of potential copyright problems there.
  • Bang on... Agree with all your points
  • The social aspect is to discover new music.  If you never ever listen to the radio and never ever buy new CDs or never ever browse Youtube or anything else for new music, fine.  But for me, I may find a new song here or there that I like, and sometimes three to five new songs.  Maybe I want to give my girlfriend one of my playlists.  With social features, I'd be able to send her my playlist, and it'd play on her phone, so she could find out music I like.  then she could build her own playlist and send it to me, and I can find out music that she likes, that I might also like. Same thing for the curated playlists, or Zune's "Channels." I do want frequently updated auto playlists so that I can discover new music.  If you don't want to find new music and keep the same 50-100 songs or whatever you have, fine, don't use it.  I will agree with you about having music not in Microsoft's library.  They need to have a music locker like Google has so that stuff that isn't matched is stored in my OneDrive and streamed to my phone.
  • Most important of all...
    Add song or albums or artists etc search by typing the alphabets or that respective name...
  • @Sam - I carefully read the article and believe it's a SOLID list - particularly #5.  When I was a PM for Microsoft, we took blogger feedback VERY seriously.  Are you in touch with any of the PMs on the team?  If not, then let's seriously fix that because the ultimate goal is that the service improves. If I had to add a 6th idea, which is hard to do, I say put back a robust Podcast feature.  Basically, put back all the features in Zune.
  • We want support for FLAC files... Stored on the SD and/or streamed through DLNA!!!
  • I don't care what he is talking about because to me the service is shit because the crAPP is shit. At this point I have zero faith in MS making the service better. Sam, your ideas are nice but you see, WE WANT THE FUCKING APP WHICH CONNECTS THE SERVICE TO FUCKING WORK BEFORE THEY START ADDING FEATURES TO THE SERVICE. THAT WOULD BE LIKE PUTTING NICE CHROME SPINNER RIMS ON A CADILLAC WITH NO FUCKING ENGINE!!!
  • And again, why did they get rid of Zune? Idiots
  • Rename it Zune.  Simple and easier than saying "X-Box Music" ten times in a conversation. But seriously: -add Zune Social so I can post playlists, albums, artists, or songs to FB/Twitter on my wall or to a friend, so they can listen to music I want to share with them.  Also, share solely within the Zune music service.  Sharing music will draw people in so you get more money from sales/subscriptions. -restore Channels.  Zune had this, and they were ever changing playlists you could subscribe to.  I would one-up this with user-created channels that others can subscribe to -view others' collections - see the music your friends listen to.  -favorite/unfavorite friends' music - after viewing a friend's collection, favorite a song, artist, playlist, or album, and it'll be added to your account for quick viewing later -favorite/unfavorite music - restore the feature with the heart/broken heart system -Smart DJ - get rid of radio and restore Smart DJ.  It sounds better and won't confuse people who, for some reason believe radio means "am/fm radio stations" - like...everyone. -auto playlists - 5 star music, most played, least played, 80's, 90's, 60's, etc. Auto playlists are a great idea -user auto playlists - you set criteria (like in Windows Media Player) and the playlist changes the content to meet those criteria (all songs less than 5 minutes in the Rock genre, in a playlist not longer than 60 minutes, etc.). -local/state/national/continental hits - see what's hot in the charts for your town, county, state, country, or any other place in the world.  Want to see what's tops in Germany?  You can!  What's the newest in the United Kingdom? Go for it!  All built in. -badges - earn badges for listening to music and sharing music and tie that into your overall X-Box profile as achievements.  A restoration of Zune Badges with more reach in the system.
  • Some very fantastic ideas. I'm especially intrigued by the badges/achievements. The Xbox One rewards you for non-gaming related activities so why not extend the program to other Xbox services?
    Also a fan of your building on the social ideas mentioned in the article. I know there are a few comments that make the claim of it being a useless feature that their taste in music is not a product of the people around them. Personally I couldn't tell you the number of times I've been at a party, in a friends car, or even just been told to have a listen to this riff and thought I have to cue up this band when I get home.i would say my taste in music is far more effected by my social circle than that of top forties radio. However, if sharing is not your style then like all features of any service you are able to make the decision not to make use of such a feature.
  • Title should read how you can make it usable
  • The service (and the app) needs to be able to sync with a *single* desktop client (like the old Zune software), not the current 3-5 that we currently have to use. Anybody coming to Windows Phone from the iOS side would laugh in hysterics if they got ahold of the music, video and podcast download management for Windows Phone:  you need a seperate app for local music and creating playlists, a seperate app for  video, a seperate app for podcasts (which is terrible) and a seperate app for managing the subscription service. It's a frackin' mess.
  • Combine Xbox music and Windows phone stores similar to Play. One the things I miss from Android is the store, you can shop apps, books, and music. Free, free, free don't follow the subscription model. And stop letting Google and Apple buying everything, Microsoft should have brought Beats & Songza. Add back features subtracted from Xbox music that were in Zune.
  • I feel proud that india stands 2nd... Means most of indians had a good taste in choosing wp over other platforms...
  • Curated playlists like Songza would be killer for me. Especially they way they do it by mood and activity. I love Songza, but I hate having separate music apps.
  • While I agree with most of your suggestions, for me the ability to manage/access/use my personal library is the top priority. I like the theory of the music locker, but I need to see a more detailed description of how this would work. Would the space count against your One Drive space, will is sync across all devices you sign in with your MS account, would you have to pay an additional fee for this feature? The service seems to be going backwards and losing features instead of staying ahead. The artist mix needs a serious overhaul to bring it atleast on par with Spotify or atleast as good as Zune was. Another feature that is lacking is how the sync handles meta data of your local files. If the service is going to ignore your local file meta and force sync it to their database we need the ability to fully edit it. Changing every soundtrack track to "various artists" or choosing the wrong album for a track without being able to edit is just nuts. Sadly the free version of Spotify is so far ahead of the pay version of XBox Music at this point i'm not sure if they are ever going to catch up.
  • If there is always something wrong with Microsoft is their hability to make their services available globally, they just put their efforts on U.S. and leaving alone the rest of the world.
  • Play music by folder from SD csrd for example ..... When I open mp3 now through file manager it opens some kind of basic player, it should play whole folder at least open dat mp3 in proper Music player
  • The Xbox Music service is not priced to match itunes in relation to syncing music across all devices.  I pay 24.99 and get all my music, paid and previously owned and uploaded,  so no matter which device I'm on I get my music.  Google music service gives 15 GB of free storage and only needs their app for all devices.  I am only getting offers of 9 permonth or 99 per year for Xbox service.  Im currently on a Nokia 925 and have an Xbox 360 so I would like to see Microsoft improve its service and priced to be competitive.   Have learned how good my Nokia is over my Iphone 5.  But have spent a pretty penny on music and movies/5v shows.  I really love my Nokia and Xbox.  Looking forward to a growing relationship with Microsoft.  
  • I would love to see a type of virtual Sonos feature that would allow you to link all devices with Xbox Music and have them play a selected song, playlist, etc. simultaneously. For instance you could have your PC and Xbox synced and playing together in separate rooms, and then you could control the music using your windows phone. 
  • One thing I miss from the Zune days is being able to heart music I enjoy. And have a curated playlist only of songs I heart. I want this feature! Stars, hearts, whatever icon works.
  • Would be great to have Zune back, as simple as that, WP7 and 7.8 music player was waaaaay much better. And merge the music app back to the OS, it makes it more fluid, we want smoothness, stability and Zune, not hundreds of crappy, useless and sensless app updates.
  • Agree with Social and Curated!!  Need this to find new music easily and give you variety. As a suscriber and non owner of any music because i have been using Slacker for so long, i have very little issues with the Player other than the duplication of songs because it validates on album.  So, you can end up with the same song from different album/singles, etc. Voting buttons that save my favorite songs to a playlist. Voting buttons that stop songs and artists from playing from any playlists that might be curated.  
  • I hate this. In Czech Republic, WP is the second most used operating system and the availability (Xbox Music, Nokia Mixradio, inc.) is terrible. Would be great if Microsoft will change it. 
  • I wish it would list albums chronologically, not alphabetically, or at least give you the option to do so. Also, it would be great to organize things by folder - or at least have designated folders where the ID3 tags are ignored. What do I mean? I've got a "Miscellaneous" folder with hundreds of pop songs in it, with no more than 2-3 by the same artist. I don't want to add these 300-400 artists to my artists list, which currently lists ony 30-40 artists that I really like and for whom I have a reasonably complete discography on the phone. (The workaround was to change the artist and album to "Various" on every single file - but this is not a great idea.)
  • Please check out my blog post on this: http://wp.me/p1fLW2-a0 My question is - would you fund a program as I proposed?  Something that looks like Zune did, ties into X-Box Music's database via the XBM API, and gives you substantially what Zune did feature-wise, but adds in mkv support, subtitles, metadata editing, multiple language interface, social sharing, cloud synch of playlists, and gapless playback?  A Kickstarter worked for VLC, but I would like to know if such would work to create a Zune successor.
  • The title should be.... 5 ways to make Windows Phone Better!  
  • Music experience on windows phone currently sucks