Shazam's Best Music Discovery Features

How Shazam can double as a great music discovery tool

Shazam-Music-Discovery
Discover new music with Shazam. Image © Mark Harris - Licensed to About.com, Inc.

You may already have the Shazam app installed on your smartphone or tablet computer and have a healthy list of Shazam tags. But, did you know that it can do more than just identify unknown songs?

It might still be viewed as a music ID app, but there's a lot more going on under the hood than you might think. Over the years functions have been added to improve its usefulness as a music discovery tool.

And it's not just for the audio side of things either.

You can for example use it to find out when and where your favorite artists are touring. You can also get lyrics for songs, and even watch music videos on YouTube. If you've only used it for identifying mystery songs that play on the TV, radio or public place then read the rest of this guide to see why you should be using Shazam to find new digital music.

See What's Trending

As you'll already know, the music world is ever-changing. New music is constantly surfacing so it's not always easy to keep up with the latest happenings. To help with this, Shazam has a great facility called Pulse which is found on Shazam's main menu. This is dedicated to showing you what's trending on Shazam's digital music network. You can see at a glance what songs and artists are currently popular and listen to them by tapping on the album covers. Pulse also provides music charts that show you what's currently popular in your country and globally.

If you like the very latest in music discoveries, then the Just Shazamed section gives you an almost real-time view on what songs other Shazam users have found.

Get Recommendations

Just like music services that analyze your tastes in music, Shazam also comes with a recommendation option. It might not be as well integrated as full-fledged music services such as Spotify or Rdio, but it still remains a great tool for finding similar songs that you might like.

If you're wondering how to view your recommendations, then this feature can be found after you've tapped on a song's album art -- you'll need to scrolled down a bit to see it.

Listen to Full Music Streams

By default when you tap on a song you'll be presented with an iTunes Store play button. This will only give you a short clip which isn't always long enough to gauge whether you like a song or not. To get past this limit, you can use Shazam's built-in support for Spotify, Rdio and Deezer. If you've signed up to any of these services then you'll be able to stream the songs in full. To get to this option you'll need to tap on the song album art in Shazam and scroll down.

Get More Content on Songs And Artists

As well as Shazam's News feature which spotlights artists and songs, there are also a few options that give you more content. You can for example find out more on artists, their concert / tour dates, and discover their most popular songs. Music discovery isn't all about listening either. With Shazam you can watch music videos on YouTube and look up lyrics for songs.

As you've discovered in this article, Shazam is far from a simple Music ID app. How you use it is up to you, but there's no doubting that it's a useful digital music app to have on your smartphone or tablet.