Best Android apps for music lovers

by Kristen Nicole

Android phones are rivaling the iPhone 4 now, so music apps are being released in droves. Here are some of the top music apps for your Android device, from personalized radio players to interactive apps.

Radio & streaming

Pandora is a favorite Android app, with personal radio stations that play all your jams. Mark your preferences as you listen, so Pandora gets to know your music taste. Free, the app lets you set multiple stations, learn more about artists, and purchase songs for download.

Rhapsody's on-demand music service will cost you about $9 per month, but consider it your endless library, with custom playlists. Listen to any song, anytime, anywhere. Rhapsody is also accessible through other outlets, such as the web, your cable box and more.

Last.fm's Android app lets you access your existing account from your phone. Hear recommended songs and stations, set your preferences, and utilize the free app as a music discovery tool. You can't directly scrobble from your phone, but you can always get a good radio station playing.

There's still no official Spotify Android app for American users, but there's hope! Spotify's mobile music app lets you listen to its large catalog of music, free. Music is searchable, and streams on demand. Sync it with your desktop app, download music for offline listening, and rewind, fast-forward, pause and skip tunes.

TuneWiki makes music social, with wiki features for commenting and sharing song information. The free app is known for its lyric inclusions, which appear on all songs streamed through the player. See what others are listening to in real time, watch music videos, and share your favorite tunes with friends.

Media center

DoubleTwist is like iTunes for Android, with a desktop and mobile app for accessing your music anytime. Import your music, and listen to it on your phone, with album art included. Similar to iTunes, you can navigate between artists, albums, songs, playlists and podcasts. Free, the DoubleTwist app also supports other media types, so you can watch videos.

For something more visually enticing, try 3 (aka Cubed). The free app puts a 3D spin on your music player, making your listening experience more interactive. Swipe to find artists, and toggle between modes to determine how you want to navigate the app. The Concerts add-on lets you see nearby performances of artists in your collection.

More music, please!

Shazam Encore brings unlimited features to music lovers, identifying a song in just a few seconds. Once tagged, the $4.99 app will give you artist and album information, YouTube clips and more. As a music discovery tool, Shazam Encore also includes lyrics, concert info and a more seamless experience for curious users.

Love music enough to make your own ringtones? Get Ringdroid for Android. The free app takes a song from your phone, and lets you edit it to create the ringtone you want. Add effects for fade-outs, volume and more, so you don't have to purchase or search for the perfect ringtone anymore.