Ever since it was in beta, I’ve been using Google Play Music as my main Android music app and music management service (aside from keeping my music in Dropbox, of course). The media streaming service has so far performed very well, and is on par with Amazon’s Cloud Player and Apple’s iTunes. However, for quite some time, Google’s offering has been missing a key feature that iTunes and Cloud Player already have: the ability to match user songs to an existing database instead of forcing the user to upload each file.
Just today, Google finally updated Google Play Music, adding the ability for users to scan and match the up to 20,000 songs that the service will hold instead of having to upload each file, wasting bandwidth and time. Despite the quality of the files on your computer, Google Play Music uses 320kbps mp3 files for playback. Unfortunately, downloading music from Google Play will return files with the same quality as was originally matched, but as long as you listen to music in Google Play, the service will now give many files a quality bump.
I recently bought quite a few best of albums from old bands, and actually haven’t uploaded the music because I always forget to add it to Google Play. I always plan to upload the songs overnight so they don’t slow down my internet connection, but every time I forget to actually add the music. Now, I can finally add the music to Google’s online service without the inconvenience of a slower connection. The match feature is fairly small, but helps Google Play Music stack up even better against its rivals. The matching services is great to have for some of my older tracks, and the update finally fixes one of the few complaints I have with the service now that gapless music playback is supported.