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Got a moment to yourself and want to listen to some great music, but no MP3s on your Windows Phone? Why not stream music from the Internet with these apps?

Top Music Streaming Options For Windows Phone 8

In moments of solitude, listening to music on your phone is always great. But if you have no space on your Windows Phone 8 Windows Phone 8: The Complete Review Windows Phone 8: The Complete Review Question: how do you improve on perfection? Answer: you wait for someone else to have a go. A quick look around the smartphone market reveals that Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android operating systems are top... Read More device for storing MP3s in anticipation of such a moment, the only alternative is to stream music.

Although options were limited when the platform first launched, you can now choose from many apps that will stream music to your phone, absolutely free.

What we want to do, of course, is avoid the riff-raff, the poor apps that promise much, but deliver little. With that in mind, here are the 5 music apps in the Windows Phone Store that you should be considering.

Sky.FM Radio

Although this app requires you to set up a free account, this is the only drawback. Offering a vast selection of genres (oldies, romantic, new age, and more mainstream choices such as pop, rock and classical), Sky.FM Radio also offers a 65-strong collection of hand-picked channels.

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The free version includes commercials but includes seven days of ad-free listening, which can be continued if you upgrade ($7). Other benefits include better audio quality and premium access to Sky.FM Radio on other apps.

Sky.FM Radio is a popular audio option for users across mobile platforms, so it’s good to see it available on Windows Phone, and with such a well-designed and stable app.

TuneIn Radio

Offering a vast selection, TuneIn Radio makes it possible to stream radio from around the world.

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Organised into genres, including talk radio for those that aren’t keen on listening to music all the time, the app is easy to use and is one of the most popular apps on the Windows Phone platform.

Streaming can be unreliable at times, but this is often a problem with the station you’re listening to rather than the app – switching to a new station shouldn’t be a problem.

We’ve previously looked at TuneIn Radio in some detail Enjoy Podcasts, Music, Talk & Sport On Windows Phone With TuneIn Radio Enjoy Podcasts, Music, Talk & Sport On Windows Phone With TuneIn Radio Aware that I should probably listen to the occasional contemporary sound, I became a convert to the BBC's 6 Music channel, which plays an astounding mix of great tunes from the 1950's to the 2010's.... Read More , so check the review to find out more.

Audiocloud

This SoundCloud client for Windows Phone 8 is a great way to find new and amazing music.

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While it doesn’t support music uploads, the app nevertheless offers a vast selection of other features, such as advanced search, integration with the OS music player and background playback, live tile and the ability to pin tracks, artists, playlists and even other users, download tracks and the ability to create ringtones from certain tracks.

Like several apps on this page, Audiocloud is on our Best Windows Phone Apps list.

Nokia MixRadio

Looking for something new to listen to?

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Nokia MixRadio might just be the app to surprise you, pushing a great selection of tracks to your Windows Phone 8 device, based on a trio of artists that you suggest. Better still, if you can’t think of any specific bands or singers, you can just choose from the curated preset (but regularly updated) libraries of music based on genre.

Many tracks and mixes can be downloaded for offline listening, while it is also possible to share, find lyrics, skip, and set a track as a favourite.

Although free, a premium service is available with a monthly subscription of $5.99, where mixes can be played on any device, audio quality is improved and unlimited track skips are available.

Mixtapes

Powered by 8tracks, Mixtapes is a great way to find custom playlists that have been uploaded and stream them to your phone.

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With a great search tool that can yield results with the shortest of terms (useful for finding groups with short names), the app enables you to browse and play tracks, skip forward (up to two times on each playlist) and even create your own custom multimix playlist.

Available free, Wi-Fi only streaming is supported, as is sharing to Facebook and Twitter. Music can be played in the background while you use other apps, and Mixtapes also has an active live tile displaying the current mix information.

3 More Notable Mentions

Fans of UK radio might be interested to know about Radio Lounge UK and BBC Radio, each of which stream live radio from those stations to your phone. These are particularly useful for fans of the BBC’s radio stations, as there is no official radio version of the BBC iPlayer app for Windows Phone as yet.

FM Radio is also worth a look, especially as it offers the ability to record and upload radio to your OneDrive account, a rare feature among these apps.

Music & Radio Apps To Avoid

Many apps promise much in the way of free music, but sadly deliver little.

Spotify, surprisingly, is one such app. It’s not that the app is bad (although the UI leaves much to be desired), more that you can only use it with a premium account. Compare and contrast with Android and iOS and you’ll see how this seems a little odd.

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Meanwhile, several apps claim to stream Last.fm content to your phone. Since the service inexplicably dumped its mobile app – after a three year deal with Microsoft came to an end – such apps are likely to attract fans of the service. Sadly, they’re dross and should be avoided at all costs.

The apps we’ve listed above are the ones you should install and have a listen to some great music with. Let us know if there any apps you think we overlooked!

Image Credits: N i c o l a Via Flickr

  1. Tim H
    April 30, 2014 at 2:06 am

    Live Music Access is a pretty awesome option for streaming concert recordings, too. Free, legal, and no ads...

    http://windowsphone.com/s?appid=411b8788-27a3-409a-a584-f381f4865e21

    • Christian C
      May 1, 2014 at 7:51 pm

      Great suggestion Tim, thanks - I'll be checking that out!

  2. Matthew H
    April 29, 2014 at 5:49 pm

    Funny, one of the things I miss most about the Windows Phone platform was Zune music. It had a pretty incredible library of albums, and its subscription model was really attractive to me.

    Excellent article as always man. :)

    • Ross V
      April 29, 2014 at 6:11 pm

      Zune is still there, it's just called Xbox Music and it's now free. It was the default music app on by windows 8.1 tablet and I have the app installed on my Nexus 4.

    • Matthew H
      April 29, 2014 at 6:12 pm

      Wait, what? You can download music for free? Srsly? That's awesome.

      Does that mean it's ad-supported now?

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