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App of the Week: SoundHound Version 5

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Developer: SoundHound Inc.

For: iOS, Android (Symbian and Windows Phone also, not yet on Version 5)

Price: £FREE

There are a number of apps out there nowadays that aim to help you identify that brilliant yet unknown song playing in a shop, club or at a party, but few do it better than SoundHound.

Along with another fan favourite Shazam, SoundHound has been around for quite some time now. As such, it’s amassed an impressive 80 million downloads and is used for a ridiculous 5 million song searches per day – the simple fact is, people want to find out about music and they want to find out fast.

SoundHound has been through much iteration, from the original app which simply listened to a song and told you what it was, to the latest version which has just gone live – version 5. The app is available on iOS, Android, Symbian and Windows Phone in both free and paid for versions (£2.99/$4.99), but only the iOS and Android versions are currently rocking version 5 with many new features.

The free version is ad-supported, but these aren’t intrusive and don’t affect the general use of the app. Once fired up, you’ll see a large button with ‘what’s that song?’ written on it – hit it and hold your phone in the air while the app listens, and within 20 seconds you’ll be told the artist, song name and album title. SoundHound will also offer you ways to view lyrics for the song, look up videos on YouTube, buy the song from Amazon’s MP3 store and even check gig information for the artist.

You can go from not knowing a song to owning the whole album and planning to hit up a gig in a matter of minutes from your smartphone, and we love that. SoundHound also gives you the obligatory share options to let Twitter and Facebook know your new favourite tune, as well as a selection of similar artists to fuel your music love even further.

Version 5 of SoundHound, which is just out for iOS and Android, features a jazzy redesign with larger album art and artist images as well as a slicker theme. You can also flick through the most tweeted and most popular songs with other SoundHound users, which is another useful tool for finding new music.

Two other major features have been added: song streams and the ability to play music that’s already on your device, with the addition of lyrics with the LiveLyrics feature. At the moment you’ll find Linkin Park’s “Burn It Down” available to stream from the app’s homepage, but this will soon change as more content is feature, says the developer.

SoundHound is a must-have app for music lovers and party goers, and we feel it’s one of those apps that everybody should have on their smartphone, as there will always be at least one time that it comes in handy. Get it now from the App Store for iOS and Play Store for Android.

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