It used to be a lot harder to get music on the internet. Sure you could have used illicit software like Napster and Limewire back in the day, but by doing so, you opened your computer up to viruses, spyware, and constant pop-up ads. Today, things are more mellow with streaming services — but the services aren’t free. So what’s the best way to discover and download music today, anyway?Well, to find it, you’d need to look in the most unlikely place on the web. Despite specializing in streaming video, YouTube is quickly growing a reputation as one of the best ways to listen, explore, and discover music on the web. And now, the company is finally playing nice with artists instead of just deleting videos with copyrighted content — greatly expanding the platform’s library of content.If you’re looking to load up your phone with the hottest new tracks, or maybe even learn about some new artists you haven’t heard of before, here’s what you need to know about this unlikely hero in the streaming music sector.
Let YouTube Music automatically fill your phone with tailored contentJust like YouTube proper, YouTube Music helps users discover new tracks via Google’s patented algorithm.This content-serving engine takes your watch/listening history, cross-checks it against similar artists and tracks, and recommends artists to you based on your tastes and what the algorithm suspects you’ll be interested in. The result for users is instant access to new artists, albums, and songs that are bound to fit perfectly within your existing collection.But discovery isn’t the only thing giving YouTube Music the upper hand when it comes to functionality. A new feature called “smart downloads” has debuted, which will automatically download up to 500 songs to your device for offline listening.
(Note: the smart downloads feature is not available on the free version of YouTube Music.)This means you’ll be able to hear your music even if you’re not connected to the internet! This feature expands upon the app’s existing “offline mixtape” function, which builds and curates 100 new tracks for you to listen to based on your history and taste.These features are a perfect fit for music lovers and provide a new avenue of discovery and inspiration in the form of recommended tracks. With so many recommendations in one place, it’s possible to discover entirely new genres and categories to enjoy that you may not have even known about before!Plus, the offline features make the app more convenient for those of us who love the outdoors. When you’re hiking or camping, cell service isn’t always readily available. The YouTube Music app provides the perfect solution to this common point of frustration.Unlike traditional streaming services, you get access to the music video for a given track when it’s available!