Product Review: Amazon Cloud Player

I've been hording MP3 files longer than most, since the mid to late 90s.  I've also never jumped on the iTunes bandwagon,  never owned an iPod, never even seen the iTunes interface.

A few years ago, Amazon started selling downloadable music.  They were the first major player to sell it DRM free, you could buy straight MP3s with no strings attached.  As a result, it's the only place I've ever paid for a digital music file.  The rest of the 30 GB or so of music in my collections was laboriously ripped (YES, mostly from my own CDs.)

The great thing about MP3 music for me has always been portability.  I keep files on my work computer, at home, and on my blackberry smartphone.  I've been known to burn discs of mixes to listen to in the truck.  The Toyota "Taco truck" I'm driving now finally has a CD player that plays MP3 files, so I can burn a disc of hundreds of songs to play there.  The cumbersome part, though, is that I've had to "sneakernet" the files around on USB drives.  They all live on our home network drive, many have been copied to work, and as many as will fit on my Blackberry are there.  Frankly though, it's not very convenient.

Amazon's unexpected Cloud Player fills a need that I knew was there, but didn't understand how bad it was until I used their service.  Unlike a conventional service, Amazon actually lets you upload and store any of your own music, and play back from anything with an Internet connection.  Once your account is setup, new Amazon purchases are automatically added to your Cloud drive.  The upshot is, no more sneakernet!  I can buy a song or album at home, and listen to it at work without any forethought or planning.  If I Rip a CD to MP3 anywhere, I can instantly upload it to the cloud and I'll have it everywhere. Even better, when I put together a playlist, the list is available anywhere.  For example, when I put together the perfect laid-back-spritual mix of Christmas music for a party last weekend, and now I'm enjoying it while at work just as easily.

This product is simple and easy to use, even for a novice.  If you have MP3s on your computer, but don't listen to them, this is an easy way to get organized and start enjoying them.

Try it here:

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