29 June 02005

FIQL: a further playlist service

Following my review of playlist sharing services, Mike Wu of FIQL.com got in touch to point me to his site. Mike writes,

FIQL.com is also a playlist sharing site and we have close to 2,000 community contributed playlists divided up by genre, mood and occasion.

Our playlists are hooked up to itunes, msn music and we recently added support for Real Rhapsody. The latter is great because if you're a rhapsody subscriber, you can listen to entire playlists with one click and that's been incredibly popular.…

We also have writers who pen regular columns for us about playlists covering such diverse topics as "Songs With Backmasking" to "Prom Songs". Each (often heavily researched) column includes an accompanying playlist. These can be found off the homepage and in the "buzz" section.

Anyway, there are many similarities between our site and the sites you've played around with recently but we do think we also have some advantages. We hope you'll take a look and let us know how we compare.

Which I'm very happy to do.

I've set up three FIQL playlists, which you can find via my profile page: two of them are remixes of the playlists I've done elsewhere (I've run out of inspiration and time, for now!) and one is uploaded from iTunes, which is itself a very nice feature.

Using the same format as previously, here are some more review comments.

Table: Review of FIQL Playlist Sharing Services
Name: FIQL (beta 2.0)
Audio Indirect links to iTunes, Walmart and MSN may provide samples, but if you have a Rhapsody subscription, you can hear the full tracks (providing they are in the Rhapsody catalogue)
Community Other users can provide feedback and ratings. There are forums, and the site owners also select some playlists as 'picks' to single them out for attention. Registered users get 'points' for participating, which rewards them with greater prominence on the site.
Usability Playlist creation and editing is done using a DHTML form, which makes the re-sequencing of quicker and easier than the user interface of most of the otehr services I have used. Playlists can be imported from iTunes, Real Player, WinAmp, Rhapsody and others. I only tried this from iTunes, but it was beautifully straightforward.
Portability None as far as I could tell.
Special features & selling points The integration with Rhapsody is unique among the services I have seen (being in the UK, I have not seen Yahoo's Music Unlimited; neither have I been able to use Rhapsody's built-in playlist sharing). For people with Rhapsody subscriptions, it provides a means to hear full tracks in playlists, on the same basis as Webjay but with a much larger catalogue to choose from.

I am always keen to find further similar sites for sharing playlists or related music and community-based activities, and my radar is not perfect, so please get in touch if you can suggest others.

Update, 18 December 02005: Mike Wu has kindly been in touch again, letting me know of this San Diego Union-Tribune article on playlists, which features him and FIQL extensively.

Posted by David Jennings in section(s) Future of Music, Human-Computer Interaction, Music and Multimedia, Playlists, Reviews on 29 June 02005 | TrackBack
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