NanoMusic: Extremely Lightweight And Simplistic Music App [Android]

Joel Lee 12-10-2012

android music appsYou know what’s crappy about an open market? Competition always tries to one-up each other. Programs and apps that once started out as humble creations tend to become bloated because they pack on the features that their competitors lack. But what’s great about an open market? Someone then creates an anti-bloat alternative. Meet NanoMusic.


Earlier this year, I wrote a compilation of music managers for Android 5 Free Apps for Managing & Playing Your Music [Android 2.2+] Whether you’re a tech-geek fanatic or a tech-illiterate layman, there’s at least one thing that resonates between both groups - a love for music. Regardless of genre, whether it's country, metal, classical, or dubstep, most... Read More . The music players listed in that article are all great and useful in their own ways, but most of them are far too bloated for my tastes. It’s nice to have certain features, but I soon end up forgetting that they exist. All I want is a quick, painless, and resource-friendly Android music app that doesn’t hog battery power.

And to my surprise, I stumbled upon NanoMusic. “Extremely lightweight” and “simplistic” are underplaying the greatness of this app. If you’re tired of bloat, look no further. NanoMusic may be the solution for you.


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You can think of NanoMusic’s interface as a basic Foobar2000 for the Android: it’s nothing more than a list of songs. There are no playlists here. There are no detail columns, no sorting mechanisms, no album art, no visualizers. What you get is a list of songs and that’s it!

NanoMusic’s theme can be changed in the options. There’s a dark mode, a light mode, a “big dark” mode, and a “big light” mode. There are no complicated control settings here. You install it and you hop right in to play your music.



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If feature bloat is what you like in a music player, you might as well look elsewhere. NanoMusic is extraordinary in that it skimps on the features quite thoroughly. You won’t find any equalizers here–nor will you find font settings, per-track volume normalizations, sleep timers, sync options, or anything else.

NanoMusic clocks in at around 100kb in size. It’s tiny in every sense of the word. And though it has no advanced features, it does support a number of audio formats: MP3, OGG, and FLAC. The actual music that shows up in the app is determined by the user with a file directory selector. Nothing fancy.

When I said NanoMusic was simplistic, I really meant it. Other than theme color and filename display, there is literally nothing you can change or alter. I understand that this is a pretty big dealbreaker for most musicheads, but NanoMusic is truly a niche app.



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If you’ve gotten this far in the review, you know that I’ve already pointed out how few options there are available. You’ve got the theme selector and the playlist format display–that’s it. Nothing else to see here. Move along.


NanoMusic is perfect for those who don’t care about “playing the player.” If all you want to do is load songs into an app and get them playing ASAP, then NanoMusic is exactly what you want. And because it’s so lightweight, it consumes very little battery, meaning you get more time to listen to your music.

The downside is that the free version is ad-supported. If you want to get rid of them, or if you just want to support the developer, you can upgrade to the paid version of NanoMusic for $2.49 [No longer available]. At the time of writing this article, the paid version has no other perks besides ad removal.


The only criticism I have of NanoMusic is that it lacks a lockscreen control. I don’t think that a lockscreen control goes against the whole simplistic design and I think it’d be a welcome feature. Other than that, I hope this app stays as minimalist as possible without succumbing to bloat pressure.

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  1. Daniel Feldman
    October 16, 2012 at 5:50 pm

    Personally i am using the N7 player. this one just looks just toooo.... ehhhh... but its good for old devices though :DD

  2. Alex Perkins
    October 14, 2012 at 4:18 pm


  3. Anish T A
    October 13, 2012 at 3:58 pm

    This app looks great and size is really small.I think it would be perfect for me as I have only few songs and it would be a perfect alternative for winamp which I currently use.

  4. android underground
    October 13, 2012 at 11:22 am

    Because of the lack of sorting options nanomusic only works for nano music collections. The app lists all 1200 songs on my sd card in one giant list that's impossible to navigate. If you have more than a few dozen songs on your phone nanomusic is not for you.

    • Joel Lee
      October 13, 2012 at 1:16 pm

      Yes, you are correct. This app is quite terrible for massive libraries since there is only one massive playlist. Very niche.

  5. Vipul Jain
    October 13, 2012 at 9:11 am

    I cant seem to find an answer here or on the play store.
    Does this app allow/provide widgets?

    • Joel Lee
      October 13, 2012 at 1:15 pm

      As far as I know, there are no NanoMusic widgets.

  6. Dimal Chandrasiri
    October 13, 2012 at 6:31 am

    this is still an upcoming application. missing some options such as album art, eq and stuff. but does the job.

    • Arron Walker
      October 13, 2012 at 7:24 am

      It's not missing those features at all - the entire point is not to include them. Re-read the article, it's designed to be absolute minimalist. I like a fair amount of simplicity, but this for me is just a bit too little. You could organise playlists via folders, but I like to edit them on the fly, so it's not what I'm looking for. Still, nice review.

      • Joel Lee
        October 13, 2012 at 1:15 pm

        Yep, you are right. Those features have been left out intentionally. It's been a few weeks since I actually wrote this article (only just got published) and sometimes the extreme simplicity can get in the way. If I could split songs into playlists, that'd be great. I have a sizable library so browsing can be difficult.

        Otherwise, I think it's still awesome as a niche player.

  7. Amy
    October 13, 2012 at 2:53 am

    You could also look into HikiPlayer here: It's also very lightweight, but the nice thing about it is that it respects your folder structure. It does have a few more features than NanoMusic does, though.

    • Joel Lee
      October 13, 2012 at 1:17 pm

      Wow! HikiPlayer might be the compromise between NanoMusic and other more bloated players that I've been seeking. I will definitely have to check it out!

      • Amy
        October 13, 2012 at 10:43 pm

        Though it is pretty lightweight, it has a widget, downloadable album art, an equalizer, customizable appearance, lyrics support, and a scrobbler. However, I don't use any of those things and can't speak to how well they work...I just like the folder structure support.

  8. Yiz Borol
    October 12, 2012 at 10:52 pm

    hmmm... might be a nice alternative...