Shazam has been available for Android for a while – since last year in fact – but since it’s such an essential app we wanted to make sure it was mentioned on the site.
Shazam listens to music picked up by your phone’s mic, compares it with its (presumably enormous) database and tries to identify it. Very useful for those occasions you hear a track you like but have no idea what it is or who it’s by. It works reaallly well. Two things impress; the accuracy of its identifications and its ability to identify relatively obscure stuff. Great when you’re out and about or when you want to check out an uncredited background track used on a TV programme.
As you’d expect, once a track is identified, you’re given the option to buy it. Unfortunately for UK users, you can’t fire up the Amazon app and purchase it directly since it’s still not available but since your tags are stored on the phone indefinitely, this doesn’t cause too much of a problem.
To give you an idea of the size of the database and the accuracy of the identifications, here’s the result of our test. Admittedly carried out in ideal conditions.
- Luscious Jackson – Why do I lie – from Fever in Fever Out
- Scott Matthews – Musical Interval – from Passing Stranger
- PJ Harvey & John Parish – Black Hearted Love – from Black Hearted Love
- Stevie Ray Vaughan – Pride and Joy – from Live at Montreaux
- Steve Earle – Feel Alright – from I feel Alright
- Pluxus – Transient – from Solid State
- Joshua Radin – No Envy, No Fear – from Simple Times
- Ljova – Central Park in the Dark – from World on Four Strings (Check this track out at LastFM, it’s amazing)
So, pretty good then.
Get the app and create a shortcut on your home page. What’s to lose? It’s only 800KB and free from the Android Market.
Developer: Shazam Entertainment Ltd
Availability: Android Market