Tune Frame for iPad is an app that’s intended to help you show off your album art on the gorgeous iPad screen, as well as create playlists on the fly.
I’ve spent some time with the app this week and I like the concept of it – but I wish there was a little more to it.
Here’s some of the app’s description, take from its App Store page:
Your album art comes alive with Tune Frame! Show off your music collection and create killer playlists!
Album art is essential to the Tune Frame experience. Your artwork is beautifully displayed across your iPad’s entire screen. Perfect for just showing off your music collection. You can two-finger tap an album to change it, or shake your iPad to make all the albums change.
Ready to start playing music? Tap an album to display audio controls and add music to your playlist. Since Tune Frame automatically determines your favorite song from an album when adding it, creating killer playlists couldn’t be easier.
Tune Frame is also brilliant for rediscovering lost favorites. See an album you haven’t listened to in years? Give it a two-finger tap and then use the "Play Next" button to bump it to the top of your playlist.
I like the way the app shows off your album art. It’s great to remember an album you haven’t listened to in too long via its constantly changing display; though also sometimes a bit painful to be reminded of some of your purchases that you might not make again today. It could be superb for blowing your street cred away if any of your friends notice any of those ‘Damn did I really buy that’ type albums popping up. :)
The app is simple to use, which is always nice. It shows a continuously changing screen full of album art for all the albums in your iTunes library. You just tap once on an album to add it to the playlist, play it next, pause play, or go back or forward among playlist tracks. A double-tap on any album will change it out. Shaking the iPad changes all the albums.
The first time you launch the app it takes a few minutes to sync with your music library – the time taken is not excessive and in my case it was able to grab album art for the vast majority of those I have in iTunes.
It’s also another decent little option for creating spontaneous playlists if you’re feeling bored with the ones you have in iTunes or other apps.
The big ‘but’ with the app is that it is very limited in what it does, and what it allows you to do. Others may feel this is OK and just part of keeping the app very simple, but here’s the two things I find very limiting about the app:
— You can’t choose which track is added to the playlist from an album when you tap on it. You get the most popular or most played track from each album. I would far rather be able to choose which track / tracks to add via a popover menu. The developers say they are looking at adding this functionality in future.
— There is only one big playlist being created each time you choose to add track. You have no ability to save separate playlists. Again, this may be fine for just a bit of spontaneous listening, but I’d like to have the ability to save separate lists. A single list rapidly becomes cumbersome I think. Also there is no ability to edit the one list that’s created as you choose tracks. This is another area the devs say they are looking into.
So I like Tune Frame as an occasional alternative to iTunes – but I’d like to see more options built into it to see it as an app I’d turn to often.
You can find Tune Frame in the App Store now, priced at $2.99.