Have you ever been out and wanted to know what song was playing on a loudspeaker? Fast forward to this age of the iPhone: Have you been where music was playing and noticed people holding mobile devices in the air? Recently, my friend was one of the people holding up an iPhone, using an application called Shazam to "hear” the song and tell her what it was. Three other people were doing the same thing, creating an instant connection with strangers who also knew about apps such as Shazam and SoundHound that can "tag” songs this way. Playing music is a huge way people enjoy mobile devices, especially the iPhone and iPod Touch, and many apps can help. For the Touch, you’ll need an external microphone for it to tag songs. I won’t go into the technology for a computer to hear a few notes of a song, process it in computer language and spit out the title and artist and similar songs. But these apps succeed in amazing and informing users. Here is a look at three: →SoundHound ($4.99 for unlimited tags each month, free with a limit of five, from Melodis Corp.). This app has been getting favorable buzz for its fast tagging speed and other features. I like this one over Shazam. It connects with another app, Pandora, to launch a radio station. →Shazam ($4.99 for an Encore version for unlimited tags per month, free version limiting users to five, free for the iPad, by Shazam Entertainment). The most-known among users, Shazam lets you connect to iTunes to buy a song and save searches. →Pandora (free, Pandora Media): Every smart-phone user into music should have this one. This app, also for the desktop, lets you generate a radio station based on a song, a group of songs or an artist. Developers have written a type of genetic code for millions of songs and grouped them accordingly. The more you listen and "like” or "dislike” the songs it plays for you, the more customized the station will be to your taste. These are also available on other platforms. To find out which work with your device, go to www.shazam.com, www.soundhound.com and www.pandora.com.
YOUR TURNE-mail app questions to lbrinkman@ opubco.com. Online: blog.newsok.com/ofinterest. Twitter: @lillie_beth.