MyStrands is a –
free (absolutely free”no strings attached!) desktop application that lets you get more connection from your digital music: more music, more friends, and especially more fun! Find friends through music in the MyStrands community. Throw parties and entertain your friends with music, messages, and pictures through partyStrands, the newest MyStrands feature. Tag music, create playlists, and of course, get instant recommendations with other MyStrands features.
The software is available for free on a number of operating systems, including the Symbian Series 60 (3rd edition) operating system (the operating system found on recent Nokia smartphones).
There are some old favourites when it comes to the features. There are recommendations, the ability to connect with like-minded users and to blog about your music choices. What I like is the ability to organise your collection using a tag cloud. The software is platform independent and even give you information on iPod plays.
I took a look around on the site and it seems that the file format for a preview is WMA (Windows Media Audio format). I wonder if the free player doesn’t act as a kind of Windows DRM facilitator? The music you may want to buy is bought from partner sites like Amazon. I haven’t had a chance to give the site a good work up so I am curious what people’s experiences are. Even if my impression is accurate and the music bought from or through the site is DRM’d to the point where it can’t really be shared or listened to except through the player, is that a terrible thing? If this is how it works, it is a really smart idea actually. When you can access the service from any platform, does DRM matter that much to the average user?