Groove Gets a Major Update on Windows 10 Mobile

Posted on February 6, 2016 by Paul Thurrott in Groove Music, Windows Phones with 0 Comments

Groove Gets a Major Update on Windows 10 Mobile

Here’s a special treat for those using Groove with Windows 10 Mobile: Microsoft has issued a major update to this app, adding significant performance improvements and many new features.

And while I know that Microsoft gets a lot of criticism for supporting other mobile platforms, Groove is one area where it is most decidedly favoring its own platforms. Regardless of this update, Groove on Windows 10 Mobile was already much, much better than the Groove app on Android or iOS. In fact, it’s almost exactly the same as the Windows 10 app for PCs.

But check out this list of changes in the latest version of the app, which now stands at version 3.6.1719.0. Note that I’ve added to the content here in a big way, since I actually use this app frequently.

  • Significant performance improvements. Microsoft made a significant improvement to the way the app finds music on the phone and syncs your cloud music collection. “This will cause a one-time rebuild of your collection when you first launch the app after this update,” Microsoft notes.

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  • Better duplicate detection. Microsoft “simplified the logic” for hiding duplicates so managing your collection is easier. Groove no longer matches local music files to similar ones in OneDrive or your Music Pass collection.
  • Better labeling of music. Songs are now labeled as OneDrive, Purchased, Music Pass, or Local Only, so you can easily tell where your music is coming from. (Select music to see how this looks.)

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  • Music properties. Now, you can select music, choose Properties from the pop-up menu, and learn more about that music.

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  • Search auto-suggest. When you search, previous searches will appear in an “auto-suggest” pop-down under the search box.

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  • Album art in Now Playing. Based on user feedback, Microsoft has added a toggle to Now Playing so you can choose between the normal artist art view and album art. (In this way, Groove now works more like other music apps.) To access this view, open Now Playing, tap More (“…”) and choose “Show album art.”

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  • New album sorting. You can now sort albums by release year, in addition to the previous options (date added, A to Z, and artist).
  • Better playlist editing. You can now select multiple items in a playlist and drag them to another spot in the playlist. Previously, you could only drag one song at a time.
  • Better scaling. In a nod to phablets (Continuum?), Microsoft has improed image scaling so that they look better “on larger devices.”
  • Explicit song tagging. There is a new explicit tag in the lists of songs in Now Playing so you can see when a song isn’t playable because it’s explicit.
  • Continuum improvements. Continuum gets a nod with improved layouts for Explore and search results, and the ability to keep playing when the screen locks. Microsoft also fixed several reliability issues, “including the one that temporarily required [it] to disable ‘sticky pivots’. With this release [Groove] will once again remember what you were doing last and bring you back to the right place the next time you launch Groove.”

This is a big update, folks. Enjoy!

 

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