Groove’s ‘follow playlist’ feature is a nice first step to social relevance…

One of the recent Groove Music features, that was released, was the ability to ‘follow’ certain playlists. What this means is that you can mark that playlist and be updated with fresh content every so often. It reminds me of the Smart DJ feature of Zune, by which you could create playlists that would auto-fresh at designated intervals, guaranteeing that you could discover and listen to fresh music on a regular basis. It also required less work on your part; all you had to do was pick up your freshly synced Zune HD and go about your day.

Ultimately, I would love to see the ability for users to designate their playlists as followable. I’ve spent the last couple of years making playlists for the community, and it would be a wonderful thing to create a playlist that the community can follow once, and enjoy fresh content as I add it there. I think, specifically, back to Black History Month when I created a Jazz Starter playlist. It would be great to simply add songs to that playlist throughout the month for others to listen to, and check out.

Beyond that, the Groove music features centered around discovery is great but I think it should move forward and work to make Groove more social. Being able to follow someone’s playlist is a very social thing. I could see this leading to things like the return of play counts (I’m sure that’s a statistic they still keep – the Xbox achievement of listening to 10,000 songs is still there), being able to share music through the People hub in the next Windows 10 update, linking a Groove Social account to individuals in your People app.

I hope that we eventually get there. It was one of the things that made Zune special. It’s one of the things that no other music service really has got right. It’s one of those things that Groove could leverage with the power of Windows, and even Xbox Live.

We’ll see.


Looking forward to Microsoft’s Windows 10 event

In a few weeks, Microsoft will present an event in New York City. It seems that the focus of the event is more about Microsoft and education. The thought is that they’ll present information about their Windows 10 Cloud edition, which is a more 2.0 version of Windows RT which will allow for form factors and devices that can take on Chromebooks head on.

Some of the key Microsoft watchers that I follow (like Mary Jo Foley) are saying that there shouldn’t be mention of newer Surface devices, which amazes me given that Surface was the show stealer at the last event. Microsoft doesn’t have any phones to display and Xbox won’t make much of an appearance – though I thought it would be hilarious if they did more Project Scorpio talk at this event.

Actually, that’s not totally true – Xbox will make something of an appearance, most likely, with their Minecraft offering. Minecraft, ever since being acquired by Microsoft, has made some astounding pushes forward into education, particularly helping kids learn about building, team building and coding. I would anticipate some news from Minecraft, in terms of more that they plan to do to push into this space. Maybe there will be a Minecraft Cloud Edition.

I’m always excited by what these events will bring. Just as I get excited about Apple and Google events. We’ll learn together, won’t we. I can’t wait!

Tags: , ,

Xbox Music: How far you’ve come!

Looking at this original introduction to Xbox Music, you do have to appreciate how far the service has come, especially under it’s Groove Music label.

Tags: ,

So how will storage be handled with Project Scorpio?

So, I’ve been thinking. I’m impressed with the revealed specs of Project Scorpio. This box is going to have a great amount of 4k goodness to it. I did get me thinking however about storage space. Not just the storage space that will be required for games (you almost certainly will need an external hard drive) but for game clips, as well.

If you’re able to create gaming clips at full 4k resolution, and you want to keep them for posterity, where will you put them? In the age of Project Scorpio, out of the gate, I can only imagine the number of game clips that will be created simply because of the “Wow!” factor. ¬†Xbox Live, as a service, can only hold so many of these. You could leverage OneDrive, but a problem there is that OneDrive is also a finite amount of storage, unless you subscribe to Office 365 – and why would you do that, if you’re a gamer?

I’m thinking that OneDrive storage should become part of the Xbox Live Gold benefits. It could be something as simple as 100GB, and only be available for as long as you have Gold. Over time, as you amass more and more clips, you can then be free to buy more storage but there should be at least a starter set of space. It’s the same idea as Groove Music – they give you 100GB when you have Groove Music Pass.

So, what does everyone else think? Comment here or engage with me on Twitter.

Tags: ,