Here is a suggesting I posted to iTunes Feedback tonight…
Could you add a “Now Playing” page to iTunes that only displayed details of the current track, much like on the iPhone’s iPod. With so much music, it is often hard to find exactly what track is playing (e.g. in shuffle mode) and the “Go to Current Song” sometimes only highlights the Genre Folder of the current song.
The “Now Playing” screen would be an alternative view to watch while listening to music and may show options like:
- Song, Artist, Album (clicking on any while just to browse mode for that Artist or Album”
- Ability to rate the current song
- Display artwork (click to maximise artwork to full view (or full screen if already in full screen mode)). Maybe show Cover Art in a Coverflow style (I think helping you visually see your albums like a real collection is important to extending the metaphor to digital music).
- Perhaps have a link to jump to a Genius Playlist based on current song
- Perhaps a “Add to Playlist” dropdown (or similar)
- Go ahead and add a link to the iTunes store to buy more from the current artist
- Potentially show the track names of the previous and next, say 5 tracks so you can look up and see what you have just heard and potentially change what is coming next (i.e. like a Jukebox).
- On the topic of the Jukebox, I think iTunes DJ does this, but I think you should make queuing tracks a more typical / accessible way to select music. For example, perhaps Option + Click would add a track to queue without interupting current song – but you wouldn’t need to be playing the iTunes DJ “playlist” before trying this. The idea is you might select 10 songs in a row inspired by the current song, but not interupt finishing the current song.
This “Now Playing” page could potentially be accessed:
- similar to the iPhone (e.g. Right Arrow from current browse view)
- by clicking the current Album Art in bottom left
- double clicking a song when you select to play may automatically start in “Now Playing” page (with back button in top left to return to music library, like iPhone).
- View | Now Playing
You may also want to jazz up the Now Playing page with some subtle animations to make it an interesting but not distracting animations. For example:
- Subtle visualisation (e.g. background may be bouncing bars of a graphic equaliser – very subtle though)
- Maybe stream additional content from iTunes store (e.g. additional images, lyrics, related news or suggested songs). Perhaps this is a feature only of iTunes purchased content as a “value add” against privacy (but does not require the LP version)?
One of the key requirements here is that as you listen to music, you get the opportunity to immediately improve on your library such as rating, managing playlists, maybe send to a friend, etc.