Outcoldplayer is the best Google Play Music experience on Windows 8.1

Google's lack of official support by way of apps for Windows 8.1 or Windows Phone is by now (in)famous. But, in the case of Windows 8.1 at least, most of Google's cloud services are accessible in their full, unhindered web form by using your browser of choice. And this includes Google Play Music.

Google Play Music is, after all, a pretty great music service that currently offers one big feature that Xbox Music does not; a cloud locker for your own music. But the web app is pretty hit and miss, even in Google's own Chrome browser. Fortunately, for the Windows using Play Music fan, there's outcoldplayer. The best way to get your Google Play Music library on your Windows tablet or computer.

Less Google, more Windows


Perhaps the nicest thing about using outcoldplayer over the web app is the appearance. Sure, it's not a totally unattractive web app, but outcoldplayer is 100% a Windows app.

It also benefits from a couple of neat features that you don't get with the web app. The first is offline caching. Essential for any cloud based music app, and whether or not it's your music or something from your All Access subscription, you're able to download it to play offline. You can also pin your favorite albums, playlists and radio stations to your Start Screen, as well as making use of the live tile.

All the All Access


Outcoldplayer also works just fine with Google's All Access subscription service. You can search for new music and explore the Google suggested tracks and albums as well as use the Radio feature. What you can't do is physically buy anything. Purchases will still need to be carried out on the web, but that's OK, since it's hooked into Google Wallet accounts anyway.

You also get the new, Songza inspired playlist suggestions in regions that support the feature.

Other good stuff


The features don't stop there either. Playlist management, Last.fm scrobbling, Xbox streaming and background music playing are all available. Then there's just the general performance. It's a silky smooth experience as we've come to expect from Windows 8.1 applications. If you're streaming it doesn't take long to hook on and play the music and it's just so easy and pleasant to use.

One thing that is worth noting is how outcoldplayer works with Google 2-Step Authentication. It doesn't use a browser based login, so you'll need to generate a unique password from the web to be able to use outcoldplayer if you've got 2-Step turned on.

The bottom line

If you're using Google Play Music in any capacity, then this is the app to have on your Windows 8.1 device. It's nicer to use than the web app, offers benefits that the web just doesn't, all the while keeping with what purists would desire from the look and feel of a Windows app.

It's going to cost you $5.99, but it's worth every penny.

  • outcoldplayer for Google Play Music - $5.99 - Download Now (opens in new tab)
Richard Devine
Managing Editor - Tech, Reviews

Richard Devine is a Managing Editor at Windows Central with over a decade of experience. A former Project Manager and long-term tech addict, he joined Mobile Nations in 2011 and has been found on Android Central and iMore as well as Windows Central. Currently, you'll find him steering the site's coverage of all manner of PC hardware and reviews. Find him on Mastodon at mstdn.social/@richdevine

  • What a lovely design it has. Shame it is related to google though.
  • ehh $6 is a bit too much for a 3rd party app for a pay to use service IMO.. hopefully some people think it's worth it tho.
  • Paid for it when it 1st came out to support the dev after his direct support and his response to early issues... Been very happy with this App ever after.... ;-)
  • Worth pointing out that a lot of functions doesn't cost at all. I can upload up to 20,000 songs to it, and I haven't payed a single penny. So as you say, for some of us might be useful.
  • I would happily pay the $6 to thank the developer just for showing interest in Windows and making a decent app for it.
  • Damn. I was excited for a minute thinking it was for Windows phone. Still looking for an app with all access ability
  • I've been using Gooroovster for a long time and I love it. I don't pay for the service tho so I don't know how that works out. Give it a try.
  • Can we get an Xbox version of this, for both Windows and Windows Phone? That app looks gorgeous! I want.
  • You just found out about this app??
  • Never even thought to look for one tbh. Doesn't matter when you find awesome things. If we didn't write about them yet, we write about them when we do.
  • So much for an empty app store, hey?  
  • It's a brilliant app and the devs are very responsive, I think it only took them a couple weeks to add the Songza recommendations after Google added it to their service.  Wish they made a universal app though, Cloudmusik is alright but not great.
  • You had me puking at "Google".
  • Puking at what's actually for many people a superior music service to Xbox Music?
  • He's right: Google Music is actually a pretty stellar service. Xbox Music (though I love it) has some serious catching up to do in terms of features.
  • Lol another pointless windows Google hater. A little competition never hurt anyone. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • I have a very strong point for hating Google.  The simple fact they won't support my OS of choice means they're my LAST choice for services. That being said, I hope this Dev makes the money El Goog refuses to make.
  • Google Music is actually really good. I enjoyed it when I was on Android. I subscribe to Xbox Music now, but there are plenty of features from Google Music I wouldn't mind having.
  • I wanted to make the full switch to Microsoft services but I am close to going back to Google Play Music because it is indeed superior. Not only in content availability, but it features such as being able to stream ANY song including music they don't own. Xbox Music doesn't let you play stream music from multiple devices unless its in their database. Outcoldplayer is awesome on Windows 8.1. I used it when I first got my Surface Pro and install it on all devices now. I wish it was available for Windows Phone. If I remember correctly, the dev couldn't get something to work right because of how Windows Phone does things so he was looking for a solution first. That was over a year ago though. Cloudmusik is also a necessity for me on Windows Phone......
    You know what, after writing this and thinking about it, I'm switching back to Google Play Music. That sucks because I want to limit my usage of their services (YouTube aside) but until Microsoft comes up with something that allows me to stream music they don't have, its pointless.
  • What's wrong with Google Play Music website? I would of bought this app to help the windows dev community if it was $2/3 at most.
  • I'm thinking of buying it just to snub my nose at Google, and I don't even subscribe to the service.
  • That's good. A great way to hear the 20,000 songs you can yourself upload for free on your account. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • only 20k? How limiting. I need access to my full 35k library.  Google just doesn't cut it for me with these arbitrary limitations.  
  • Good news!  They increased the limit to 50,000 just a few weeks after your comment.
  • If it's got Songza support, maybe I'll consider it. I really try to avoid use of Google services other than YouTube.
  • Would love a Xbox Music alternative for our local music. Best was Artist Info by Johnny Westlake, but that has gone MIA and nothing else really seems to be solid, look nice, and work accordingly.
  • I wish more people would stop giving away their money, loyalty, and privacy to Google.
  • And we really are sure that Microsoft is any better...... They both do similar things such as targeted ads and sending information through their servers, so I really don't know why so many people act like Google is pure evil and Microsoft is a shining light in the darkness.
  • To justify their own purchase's and products. Bad mouthing the "other side" is not only to do just that but also to make one's own choise the better one.
  • It's not about that, or about Google being more "evil" than Microsoft, whatever that means. Google has publicly committed never to write mobile apps for Windows. Any company that cares more for its war on Microsoft than it own customers on Windows deserves neither those customers' time nor attention. As a Windows user, that makes things pretty clear cut for me. Your mileage may vary.
  • The problem is that you're assuming that everyone uses only one company for devices and services. I'm not going to stop using one company on one device just because they don't support another device. If you really wanted to go all on one company, then it should be Sony. They're the most diverse in the tech world: PlayStation, phones, computers, software, TVs, cameras, and even a film studio.
  • I think you missed SilverSee's real point, while I love Sony it wouldn't solve your problem if you want to use Windows Phone. I don't believe you should just use one Os for too long you become fan boyish even without wanting to so I don't blame people for using Android or Apple. But I agree with the original point to a certain degree I wouldn't be open to buying Google apps because we're being denied something that's offered to apple users and that says alot to me. Google not offering us apps to free services we can't ignore it. I could careless about the whole sending info stuff yes it's annoying but isn't the reason I rarely use google like I use to I don't use anything but Gmail because that's all were allowed no g+ app or hangouts so I don't use either now because it's so inconvenient that's the true issue I have with Google
  • The best Google Play Music experience is XBox Music.
    All the music, none of the creepy identity profiling.
  • Will this work with T-Mobiles free streaming?
  • I believe they use the server address when deciding to bill, so it's using Google's server directly and not an intermediary, I suspect the answer is yes.
  • Out-coldplay-er
  • Bought it a couple months ago. Absolutely love it. Totally worth the $. It is my default music player on my desktop. For anyone wondering, the developer tried to make the software work on Windows Phone but it turned into a laggy mess from what I remember reading.
  • He'll try again when full universal (w10) support arrives and it will be magical.  
  • The question is, in Windows 10, does this automatically become a phone app as well?   Or is all that talk about 'write once, use everywhere' just bull-pucky marketing speak?
  • I've used Google Play Music and Outcoldplayer on Windows 8 since it was first released under a different name (can't remember what it was though). It actually used to be free, but was Much less feature rich, the dev was nice enough to make it a free upgrade for users of the old version.
    However, considering the ridiculousness of Google's unwillingness to make Windows apps, most importantly a Windows Phone version of Play Music, I have completely switched to XBOX Music.
    And considering what a full Year subscription of Xbox Music was on sale for during the holiday ($30!!), I have had zero problems making the jump. The storage of music in the cloud that has been scanned in gets by part of the fact that there I no Locker service, not all music makes it it, but its good enough until the Locker service goes live.
  • We need Hangouts...!
  •    Wasn't Microsoft supposed to be working on a cloud storage feature for Xbox Music? Whatever happened with that?
  • Ewwww, Google.. Take it away, take it away..
  • I've used it for quite some time and really enjoy it. It is well done and has improved quite about from its already very good early iteration. I don't recall paying for it, though I think it was a reward for early users not to have to pay. Or maybe it is that you only had to pay for access to the Google All Access. Either way very satisfied, well worth the expense.
  • The design is great
  • I think this is cool If I used Google Play I don't think the $6 would be too much. But I love supporting developers who support Windows.
  • I do not using any google related product!
  • Outcoldplayer no longer works, appearently due to some changes on Google's end. The lack of notification is one thing that really bugs me. I found out there was a problem when my Surface RT wanted me to login to my Google account. I kept trying to no avail, pretty sure I had the right password. The app was working fine on my Surface pro two meters away. Next step, I uninstalled the OutcoldPlayer app planning to reinstall it. A pretty common and logical way to troubleshoot, no? However when I went to reinstall the app it didn't show in any searches of the Windows Store. Que? Did I misspell something? Was there a space between Out and Cold or Player? No spelling options worked. So I went to check my purchase history and found Outcoldplayer was in fact in the store when I clicked on it, until an error popped up stating this app was no longer available. WTF?!  
  • Looks like they went out of business. Too bad, it really was the best Google Music app for Windows. Their site says it's due to the API changes. Looks like like their source code is up for sale as well. https://outcoldplayer.uservoice.com/