Last week I wrote about my frustration of using Microsoft’s Groove app on iOS and Android and how unlike most of Microsoft’s other services the experiences on Android and iOS were significantly worse than on Windows. With most Windows users running iOS or Android I thought it was really holding back Groove.
Today Microsoft has released a new version of Groove for iOS and Android addressing many of the app shortcomings.
Version 3.0.60707 for Android and 3.5.60708 for iOS look very much like the Windows app running on Windows 10 Mobile which is a very good thing as the I really like the Windows app. Gone is the old Xbox Music app and its replaced with a responsive designed app that looks great on small and large Android devices. You can browse your music collection and explore the Groove music catalogue. The only thing missing from the Windows version is the “Your Groove” automated playlists and hopefully this will be coming soon. You can find a Your Groove playlist on Windows and then save it your playlist collection and it will then sync to iOS and Android.
Whereas the old app was slow and buggy this app seems fast and responsive, I don’t know about the bugs just yet but so far it has worked fine without crashing. The test will be how it works when I am out and about.
The iOS version is still iPhone only so its x2 on an iPad. Microsoft say this version improves playback reliability, faster downloads for offline playback and new sorting options. Microsoft also say that they are still working on updates for the apps including adding background downloading.
Here are the details from Microsoft:
Look for version 3.5.60708 in the Apple App Store and version 3.0.60707 in the Google Store which include:
Significant improvements to product and playback reliability.
An Explore view to learn about the most popular songs and new releases from top artists.
Faster download of albums and songs so you can play them offline. The app still needs to be in the foreground to download music, background download coming in a future update.
Screen resolution improvements to support today’s larger screen mobile phones.
New sorting options when viewing your collection of music.
Much faster sign-in to the app using your Microsoft account.