A new app by M&M Media called Trebel Music has just been released for Stony Brook students to download. Stony Brook was one of the few universities that was chosen to try out the app. Other universities include UCLA and Troy University.
I know what you may be thinking: Why do we need another music app?
I am a Spotify user, so when I heard about this app, I was skeptical that it would be better than what I have been using.
However, I then spoke on the phone with CEO at M&M Gary Mekikian and COP of M&M, Corey Jones.
We participated in a conference call as they walked me through a pre-release version of the app on the computer. I have to say, I was impressed.
Trebel Music combines social media with music sharing. It allows users to create their own profile page where they can make different playlists. There are a couple of factors that set this app apart from other music apps, like Spotify and Pandora.
1. Everything is totally free. It is free to download the app and it is free to download songs. What the app does is give you virtual money. You receive points when you do certain things, like download songs or albums. When I downloaded the app on my phone I got a free virtual gift of 5,000 points. Your points are what allows you to download the songs. Then, when you rack up these points, you can use them to skip advertisements or buy virtual goods. Mekikian describes it as being like a game. These ads are the way that the company makes its money and can pay the artists who participate. Ads usually show up when you are downloading songs. Mekikian said that the idea is to put the ads in places where they do not disrupt the user.
2. The app will sync with your iTunes account. So that any song you have ever downloaded or bought off of iTunes will go onto the app. This feature is convenient because all of your music is in one place.
3. The university becomes one big music community. This app allows you to connect with other students at Stony Brook by adding that you are an SBU student on your profile. Once you have done this, you will be able to see the “top downloads” and “top plays” from students at SBU. You can download then download songs directly from these playlists. Similar to a social media app, with Trebel you “follow” other users. When you are following a user it allows you to see when they add songs to their own playlists.
4. Taylor Swift fans, rejoice. Anybody who uses Spotify as their primary source for music knows that you will not find Taylor Swift on there. If you’re like me and you don’t want to commit to being a Taylor Swift fan, but you enjoy the occasional listen to “Style” or “Wildest Dreams,” this is disappointing. Trebel, however, does allow you to download Taylor Swift’s music for free. It’s a miracle.
5. Sharing playlists: You can develop playlists for your friends and then share it with them. This reminds me of back in the day when a boy would make a mixtape for the girl that he liked. The idea of being able to share playlists with my boyfriend makes me really excited. But, I’m more excited to share with my sister, because she always finds cool music.
6. The look: When a song plays the user will see a CD looking thing spin around in the middle of your phone. Not only is this a cool design touch, but it is also functional. You can spin your finger around the “CD” to rewind or fast forward the song. The color also drags you in. Mekikian called it “the yellow app.”
7. When you are using the app, you are not using up your data. As I mentioned, I am a Spotify user. I tend to keep my app playing even when I do not have not have Wi-Fi and I am constantly going over my data limit for the month. With Trebel when you download a song it is not streaming it to your phone, but actually downloading it to your phone. “You download the music when you are connected to your Wifi network, and then it is sitting on your device and you can play it anytime you want,” Mekikian said. This brings me to my next point: Storage.
8. The storage is unlimited. While the app does takes up storage on your phone, you will never run out of room due to the app’s content. Mekikian talked about how Treble Music has created an algorithm that watches the amount of disc space each user has on their phone. He said that when your storage gets too low, Trebel will send you a notification, but what Trebel will also do is stash the songs that you have not listened to in a number of months onto your own cloud on the app’s server. Then, when you want to listen to that music, it is put back onto your device so that you can play it.
9. The app is directed toward college students, but not restricted. Though the app is geared toward college campuses, it does not have to be used in that way. The idea of being able to connect with your university through the app is awesome, but eventually anybody will be able to download the app. You are also able to share playlists with anybody who has the app, not just other people from your campus. Mekikian said that the reason the app is targeted at college students is because they do not have money to pay for music. After trying the app out on some college campuses, the app will then be debuted for some high schools.
Now, of course, us college kids hear the word “free” and we come running. Based on the virtual run-through I went on of this app, I give it two thumbs up. I have downloaded the app and so far, it does what it said it would.
If you would like to try the app out for yourself you can download it here or you can search for it in the app store.