Scrobbling: How is it Used For Music?

Do you know which music services allow you to scrobble to Scrobbling real-time music scrobbling. Image © Mark Harris - Licensed to, Inc.

If you've never used the music service or don't know anything about its history, then you might not be familiar with the act of Scrobbling music.

The process of Scrobbling (or to Scrobble) is a term invented by to describe the logging of songs that you listen to. The word originally comes from the music recommendation system, Audioscrobbler, which started life out as a university project -- conceived and programmed by co-founder, Richard Jones.

The purpose of's scrobbling system is to give users a way to see their music listening habits and also to see recommendations that may be of interest. As you play songs from sources that use Scrobbling,'s service adds this information to its database which can be used to display various statistics (song title, artist, etc.). Metadata information such as a track's ID3 tag is used for this.

By building up a profile of the songs you listen to, it is possible to use as a music discovery tool.

Can I Scrobble From Streaming Music Services?

As previously mentioned, Scrobbling isn't just limited to's service. There are many ways you can build up your listening profile, including while you stream music. To help collect information about all the songs you listen to, some online services offer the option to set up a link to (using your account details) so the data is automatically sent.

Streaming music services like Spotify, Deezer, Pandora Radio, Slacker, etc. all have this ability to log the tracks you stream and transfer this information to your profile. But, some don't have native support for Scrobbling. In this case, you'll need to download and install special add-ons for your Web browser.

Do Software Media Players Allow Scrobbling?

If like most people you have a music library on your computer, then you'll be using some sort of media manager like iTunes or Windows Media Player for instance. But, how do you Scrobble to from your desktop?

Some software has this facility built in. If for example, you use VLC Media Player, MusicBee, Bread Music Player, or Amarok then all these have native support for Scrobbling. However, if you use iTunes, Windows Media Player, Foobar2000, MediaMonkey, etc., then you'll need to install a 'go-between' software tool.'s Scrobbler software which is worth checking out can be downloaded for free and is currently available for Windows, Mac, and Linux. It works with various music players so is probably the first option to try.

For other media players that aren't listed as being compatible, it's probably best to visit the developer's official website to see if your particular music player has a custom plugin for Scrobbling.

Can Music Hardware Devices be Used to Scrobble?

Yes, there are quite a lot of different types of hardware devices that can Scrobble to This includes portable devices like the iPod and home entertainment systems such as Sonos etc.

Other Scrobbler Software also provides an exhaustive list of Scrobbler tools via its website for various applications.  These 'plugins' can be used for things such as adding support to Web browsers, Internet radio stations, and hardware devices.

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