Rdio service will make you sing a new tune Canadian University Press January 26, 2014 12:00 am Culture AIDAN MOUELLIC — The Other Press (Douglas College) NEW WESTMINSTER — Netflix has changed the way we watch video content to the point that video rental stores are now practically non-existent. What Netflix did for movies and television, audio-streaming website Rdio might do for music: make it more accessible and inexpensive to consume. One of the most popular music streaming sites in the world right now is YouTube, but it’s designed for watching videos and includes advertisements that make it an awful option for listening to music. This is where Rdio comes into play. You go to the website and you can stream practically any song or album you want in great quality with no ads. Just like Netflix, though, this service is only free for a short trial period — up to six months on the web or two weeks on mobile devices with Rdio Unlimited. At a regular $9.99 a month, Rdio subscriptions are reasonable and much less expensive than purchasing album after album on iTunes. College students can get a discounted Rdio subscription rate for $4.99 a month, but this only applies to students in the United States and is good for a maximum of four years. My iTunes has seen little use lately; I’ve been using Rdio for almost all of my music needs, and I’m extremely pleased so far. Unlike other popular music streaming sites that are only available in the US and other countries, such as Spotify and Pandora, Rdio offers an excellent streaming platform for Canadians. Besides the great selection of music and ease of use, my favourite part about Rdio is how simple it is to synchronize devices. No matter where you are, you can be connected and listening to your library of Rdio favourites. The accompanying mobile app was fantastic on my Android phone, as well. Not only can you listen to your music, but the mobile Rdio capabilities allow you to use your phone as a remote control. At home, I will often leave my laptop connected to my sound system and play Rdio throughout the house, using the Rdio app on my phone to change what’s playing. Developing a personal music library can be tedious and expensive. For pure convenience and pleasure, Rdio offers a more ethical alternative to using torrents or streaming ripped copies on YouTube. Sure, Rdio has some obscure tracks missing from its vast library, but I don’t mind since it offers me the freedom to enjoy my music without Apple products or ads. Rdio has allowed me to explore new musical avenues I might not have otherwise. — Graphic: Cody Schumacher/Graphics Editor Wooley For those who don’t want to pay $10 a month for what our neighbours to the south pay $0, there are browser extensions that can unlock region restricted sites like Spotify. But I too find that web streaming services offer a much better experience than iTunes or the like. CJS Songza, Slacker, TuneIn Radio, even Soundcloud all stream music on computer and mobile. Songza has a pretty decent selection of playlists, Soundcloud has artist that don’t exist anywhere else, and Slacker is even available as an X-Box app. TuneIn is simply an easy way of finding AM and FM radio stations from anywhere in the world. And these are all free and available in Canada.