Google Play Music is my favorite music streaming service — but running it in my main browser has some drawbacks. Luckily Loop has emerged as a nice standalone desktop app for Google Play Music. It lets you keep your music player separate from your main browser, improving your overall performance and simplifying the task of navigating to your tunes.
First, why is Google Music so great?
I know that Spotify is the “cool” music streaming service, but I get everything I need from GPlay Music at a much lower price. It lets you upload and stream all your own music files for free, then lets you stream from their full catalog of all the music you don’t own yet from your mobile device (iOS or Android) or just in a web browser. It also comes with a YouTube Music / YouTube Red premium account that lets you play any music anywhere in YouTube — a huge selection of music!! It also gives you some cool premium features on YouTube, and lets you play your YouTube mobile app with the screen off. If you have a family, you can put up to five people on the same Google Music family plan and your per-person cost is about $3/person! Not only that, but any songs, videos, books, or apps you buy in the Google Play ecosystem can be freely shared with everyone in your family — really nice when you want to share with your peeps. Finally, it all works nicely on Android, and probably iOS as well (though I haven’t checked the iOS ecosystem in a while).
What’s wrong with using it in a browser?
Browser Memory Usage
Every extra browser tab or window you have open takes up memory and degrades your computer’s performance. Chrome is notorious for memory leaks, and I find that having a dedicated window for G Play Music slows down my other tabs a little.
Considering that I often have multiple tabs and windows open for work, I want to save that memory for the tasks I’m directly working on, and let my music run in the background. It’s better to have G Play Music run as its own process, helping your computer manage its memory optimally.
Multiple Google Accounts
I have multiple Google accounts logged in to my Chrome browser at a time, and the switching between accounts leaves a lot to be desired. Chrome doesn’t seem to remember that I never use Google Music with my work account, but it always wants to sign me in with that account and inform me that I don’t have any music in there.
Better to have one app that’s always signed in to the right account, then you can just open it up and jam!
Where Loop Shines
For the reasons above, Loop is a great alternative to playing Google Play Music in your main browser. It’s an Electron App, meaning it works on Mac, Windows, and Linux. You have to install it to the computer, which may be hard if you don’t have admin access to your work computer, say, but otherwise, it’s a nice smooth way of streaming your music from the desktop!
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