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Posts tagged with "scrobbling"

Apple Music Replay Is Out, but for a Deeper Look at Your Music Habits, Try Last.fm

Yesterday, Apple released Apple Music Replay, its annual recap of Apple Music subscribers’ listening habits. The site is beautifully designed with images of artists coming to life with video when you’re not scrolling the page. Included this year are:

  • A highlight reel
  • Top artists
  • Top songs
  • Top albums
  • Top genres
  • Top playlists
  • Top radio stations
  • Listening milestones

As I scroll through my lists, there isn’t anything surprising here. I could have guessed my top artists, songs, and albums and put at least the top five or so in the correct order, which goes to the heart of what I and others have faulted Apple Music Replay for in the past.

The site looks great, and the listening milestones, which explain things like the fact that I crossed 25,000 minutes of listening in early August, are interesting, but they don’t go deep enough. I’d like to know things like which of the artists that I didn’t listen to prior to 2023, did I listen to the most in 2023? What’s a favorite album or band from years ago that I rediscovered? How did the genres I listened to evolve over the course of the year? Which artists took off in my regular rotation compared to past years? There are a million questions that could be answered by Apple Music that aren’t, and that’s a shame.

Spotify does a better job at surfacing interesting data with Wrapped, but if you’re like me and prefer other aspects of Apple Music, sign up for Last.fm, use one of the many excellent indie apps, like Marvis Pro, Soor, Albums, Longplay, Doppler, and Air Scrobble that support the service, and then enjoy your weekly, monthly, and annual reports in Last.fm’s app or on its website.

To view your own Replay 2023 statistics, visit replay.music.apple.com.


AirScrobble Greatly Expands Its Utility with Headphone Compatibility, Live Activity Support, and App Shortcuts

It’s time to take a brief break from widgets to bring you scrobbles. Scrobbling is Last.fm’s name for matching and logging the music to which you listen. The payoff of scrobbling is the in-depth statistics that Last.fm delivers monthly and annually to users. It’s also a great way to relive musical moments in your life and find music that you may not have in your library but that you may have heard while you’re out and about.

One of the best ways to scrobble on the iPhone and iPad is with AirScrobble, which has grown into a terrific all-around Last.fm utility. One of the app’s previous limitations, though, was that it only worked with music playing over a speaker. If you were using AirPods or other headphones, so the music couldn’t be matched via an iPhone or iPad’s microphone, you were out of luck. However, with the app’s latest release, you can now scrobble even while listening with headphones.

Scrobbling from Broadcasts.

Scrobbling from Broadcasts.

That alone is pretty great, but AirScrobble now works with any app that produces audio, too. Say you’re using Steve Troughton-Smith’s excellent Internet radio app Broadcasts to listen to your favorite college radio station. Now, AirScrobble can match the songs as you listen. The same goes for Reels you watch on Instagram, YouTube videos, and a lot more.

AirScrobble also includes Live Activity support. If you’ve started automatically scrobbling as you listen, the Live Activity expands when a song is recognized, offering an interactive button for manually scrobbling the song immediately.

AirScrobble's App Shortcuts, Manual Scrobble App Shortcut, and Live Activity on my Lock Screen.

AirScrobble’s App Shortcuts, Manual Scrobble App Shortcut, and Live Activity on my Lock Screen.

The app has added support for App Shortcuts, too. If you’re out at a restaurant and hear a song you don’t know and want to capture it, do a quick Spotlight search for ‘AirScrobble’ and pick the Match App Shortcut. There’s also a Manual Scrobble App Shortcut, which lets you search for the name of a song using the search field. Plus, there’s a Love Track App Shortcut for marking a track as one of your favorites.

I love this update to AirScrobble. It works in so many more situations now that headphones are supported, as well as other audio sources. The Live Activity makes it easy to scrobble while doing something else on your iPhone or iPad, too. If you’re a music lover and use Last.fm, check be sure to check out AirScrobble.

AirScrobble is available on the App Store as a free download. Some of the app’s features require a subscription.