// Internet Duct Tape

BetaPlug – uPlayMe social friendfinder by mp3 playlist

Posted in Music, MP3s and Internet Radio, Technology, Web 2.0 and Social Media by engtech on September 16, 2006

I’m trying out a beta of a new software application called uPlayMe. Much like how Microsoft’s Zune seeks to start the next revolution in the music player industry by “socializing music” (not that we didn’t do that before), uPlayMe wants to help people make friends by the only criteria that matters: musical taste.

Being a beta, there are some limitations like Windows only, only supports iTunes, yadda yadda but that’s to be expected so I won’t go into them. What I am impressed by is the simplicity of it all. Profile + playlist = people.

The profile amounts to a picture, a tag line, and three websites of your choice. Aside from that brief information you have to sell yourself by your last 10 songs playlist. The playlist is automatically grabbed from iTunes and iTunes doesn’t have to be running. Nice touch. New songs are updated to the playlist as soon as they’ve finished playing. Users can be contacted via IM from within the program, or by email if they’re allowing people to contact via email.

More about uPlayMe after the break.


I didn’t get a chance to try out the IM as I couldn’t find anyone else online.

The focus really is on the music, and you can only search for people by artists and track names that they might have on your playlist. I’d like to see criteria like searching only in online users, and only users who have an account on specific webhosts (like only myspace users).

All-in-all, I was suitably impressed with the service. Technically they seem to be doing things right with the music matching. The only downside I hit was (as with any new social service) there really wasn’t that many users, especially users with profiles filled out. I was also trying it out too friggin’ early in the morning.

Suggestions for improvement

  • I showed up in my own search results, that shouldn’t happen
  • Integrated myspace control so that people can put a widget up on myspace that links to their uPlayMe profile and recent playlist (or top ten playlist, or something)
  • RSS feed that links to uPlayMe profile and recent playlist
  • Make specific data fields for myspace, blogs, etc and then let me search by users who have a myspace profile, etc (keep the “any URLs” feature though, that’s cool)
  • Search by online users
  • Searching by location
  • Searching by gender
  • Give users the ability to limit whose search results they show up under (gender, min/max age, only show up to users near me, don’t show up to users near me, etc)
  • Try to partner up with a dating site like PlentyOfFish.com
  • Friends lists, and the ability to make friends lists public
  • But don’t make it too complicated, the simplicity is really nice

Conclusion

I uninstalled the software after trying it because this isn’t something I’m going to using. I have a large enough friend circle as is. What’s interesting though is we all pretty much met through liking the same music and living in the same location, and that’s why I think uPlayMe will be successful.

Even though it’s in beta it is fully functional, and there’s no reason not to become an early adopter.

After registering for the beta, you’ll get an email asking you to fill out a survey about the product. Only takes about four minutes to fill out, and I was very impressed with the level of professionalism and the way the questions were asked to ferret out bugs. This looks like this will be a very good product with a good team behind it. uPlayMe is worth trying.

Full disclosure: the author contacted me and asked me to give it a plug. The beta is publicly available though, so I didn’t get any preferential treatment.

4 Responses

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  1. A.J. Valliant said, on September 16, 2006 at 7:44 pm

    Very cool, but there was way too much Coldplay on your list.

  2. engtech said, on September 16, 2006 at 10:04 pm

    That’s the problem with listening to albums at a time instead of individual songs :)

    It’s a really nice day outside, why are we all hanging out on our computers?

  3. David said, on December 01, 2006 at 6:46 am

    Just noticed a quirk with the layout on this post, as the image is just big enough that the side menu overlaps the image (at least in FireFox 2).

  4. engtech said, on December 01, 2006 at 7:58 am

    The joy of changing themes. Thanks for the comment, David.


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