The app that we are reviewing today is a very unique concept. It’s one of those apps that makes you think, “Wow, that’s cool; but do I really have a use for it?” It’s impressive, and it makes you wonder how it works, but it doesn’t immediately stand out as something that you’ve always been longing for.
It’s called Seamless, and makes it easy for you to transition songs from your Mac to your iPod without losing track of where you were in the song or podcast. Sounds cool, but how well does it work? Let’s take a look.
This app is brand new – coming out just a week or two ago – and it’s free on the Mac App Store. You do need, however, to buy the companion app for the iOS, which goes for $0.99 (and without it the app doesn’t really do anything).
Once you’re set up with the Mac app and its mobile counterpart, you’ll need to sync them up in order to be able to transition songs from one to the other. Let’s see how that works.
You would expect the installation of this app to be different from any other app, as you have to sync it to your device. I was expecting this to be a fairly long, intricate process – but it’s actually very simple, although you receive almost no guidance through the installation.
After installing the app it will ask you if you want to run it every time you login. After that, it just opens up a little icon on your menu bar. No introduction, no settings, nothing. Even on the menu of the app there isn’t anything particularly helpful. It just says “Ready to transition (song playing)”. Perhaps too simple?
You have to go back to the description of the app in the App Store to understand how it works. There it says that you need to download the iOS app in order for Seamless to work. Oh. I first thought this was going to work without having to open an app in my iPod.
How It Works
After you purchase, download and open the app on your iOS device, you’ll be asked to “Add a Mac”. The app will search for a Mac online and will display its name on your device. Click it, and a message will pop up in your Mac asking you if you want to allow your iPod to connect. Then you are done.
Now, every time you open the app on your iOS device, it will automatically connect to your Mac and check if you are listening to something. If you are, it will show the artwork of whatever is playing, with a button that lets you transition the track to your iPod, or back to your Mac. Everything works nicely and with an amazing speed. It even fades the sound in and out of each device, which is a pretty cool effect.
I like to listen to albums. In fact, most of the time I’m listening to either albums or playlists. I never play just one song. I was expecting this app to work with albums, but it just doesn’t.
Whenever you transition a song, the song will play inside the app of Seamless, but if you quit it and go over to the Music app, you’ll notice that when you transition a song, it will play it in a shuffle playlist along with all of the other songs in your library. So, when the song is over, you’ll get a random song from your library.
Update: We want to point out that this functionality has actually been implemented in an update that is currently pending approval by Apple. Album position will be preserved when transitioning music to your iPhone – something that makes this app a whole lot better!
The app works as advertised. In the description of it and in the video that’s on the dev’s web page it says that it’s for when you are playing a song on your computer, but have to leave and don’t want to interrupt the song and go look for it under your mobile device’s library. I get it, it works and I think it’s certainly an impressive concept.
As of now, one of the best uses I find for this app is for podcasts, because they usually are pretty long and it can be annoying scrolling on your iPod to the place where you left off in your Mac.
Despite these initial problems, I am excited to see what the next releases bring. What about you? Would you find Seamless useful in its current state?