Alternatives to Apple’s iOS Music App

If you like listening to music on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, but don’t use Apple Music, you may find the new Music app to be overkill. It’s got lots of features that don’t add much to your listening experience and just get in the way. With a cluttered interface, Apple’s Music app has lost its main vocation: the ability to let you choose the music you want to listen to quickly and easily.

Fortunately, there are lots of alternatives. Most of these apps try to simplify the experience of spinning songs on your iOS device, or offer more intuitive ways of controlling your listening sessions.

While Apple doesn’t let you easily replace its bundled apps–for example, even if you have another browser installed on an iOS device, Safari opens when you tap a link–there are no such limits with music player apps. They can all access the music you sync over iTunes, and the music you download to your device from iCloud or the iTunes Store. So any music player app can access your library, and you can control playback from your iOS device’s lock screen, or even your Apple Watch.

Here’s a look at four apps you can use to play music on your iOS device.

Read the rest of the article on Macworld.

20 thoughts on “Alternatives to Apple’s iOS Music App

  1. Thanks for the info on Cesium. I have loved Ecoute as a great alternative to the Music app, but Cesium might even be better. Ecoute does seem to run a bit smoother. Cesium’s search feature has a terrible lag. Ecoute’s is smooth as silk.

  2. Thanks for the info on Cesium. I have loved Ecoute as a great alternative to the Music app, but Cesium might even be better. Ecoute does seem to run a bit smoother. Cesium’s search feature has a terrible lag. Ecoute’s is smooth as silk.

  3. One feature that I miss in the Music app is the track count within a playlist or queue (such as “5 of 125”). Do any of these alternative apps include that information?

  4. One feature that I miss in the Music app is the track count within a playlist or queue (such as “5 of 125”). Do any of these alternative apps include that information?

  5. Is iTunes Match supported by any of these apps (my guess would be no)? Or can they access Dropbox (I’ve been thinking about ditching iTunes Match, moving my iTunes library on to Dropbox, and then finding a player with buildin support for that)?

  6. Is iTunes Match supported by any of these apps (my guess would be no)? Or can they access Dropbox (I’ve been thinking about ditching iTunes Match, moving my iTunes library on to Dropbox, and then finding a player with buildin support for that)?

  7. Do any of the apps mentioned in the article update iTunes play counts, etc when the device is synced with itunes? I use that stat for smart playlists. And like the above commenter I’d like to know if there are any music apps with good dropbox support.

  8. Do any of the apps mentioned in the article update iTunes play counts, etc when the device is synced with itunes? I use that stat for smart playlists. And like the above commenter I’d like to know if there are any music apps with good dropbox support.

  9. I’ve been using TuTuneMe for years. Great customisable gesture-based interface, and displays additional information (like composer or comments) hidden in the official Apple app. And yes, as it uses the device’s synchronized music library, it updates play counts.

  10. I’ve been using TuTuneMe for years. Great customisable gesture-based interface, and displays additional information (like composer or comments) hidden in the official Apple app. And yes, as it uses the device’s synchronized music library, it updates play counts.

  11. I just bought Picky for the iPad – it’s $4.99, BTW – and it’s gorgeous and easy to use! I don’t know why I thought I was stuck with the Music app – thanks for the recommendation, Kirk! This is gonna be a lot more fun…

  12. I just bought Picky for the iPad – it’s $4.99, BTW – and it’s gorgeous and easy to use! I don’t know why I thought I was stuck with the Music app – thanks for the recommendation, Kirk! This is gonna be a lot more fun…

  13. Thanks for the informative article – I’ll be looking into other options for classical music, which seems to be getting more and more annoying to play on my iPhone.

    But I have a request: it’d be great if you could write a similar article about podcasts and alternatives to Apple’s Podcasts app. The latest iteration of that app has lots of problems, and it’d be nice to know more about other options. (And to be honest it’d also be nice to see a bit more media attention devoted to podcast management. I don’t think podcasts are limited to the niche groups they used to be.)

  14. Thanks for the informative article – I’ll be looking into other options for classical music, which seems to be getting more and more annoying to play on my iPhone.

    But I have a request: it’d be great if you could write a similar article about podcasts and alternatives to Apple’s Podcasts app. The latest iteration of that app has lots of problems, and it’d be nice to know more about other options. (And to be honest it’d also be nice to see a bit more media attention devoted to podcast management. I don’t think podcasts are limited to the niche groups they used to be.)

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