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Summary:

DoubleTwist continues to challenge iTunes as a media sync platform. The lastest version for Mac adds fantastic features like a revamped media player, podcast searching and a killer function — seamless integration with the Android Market that’s better than using the market on my Nexus One.

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DoubleTwist is quickly becoming the iTunes solution for the masses and I’m glad I adopted it back in October of last year to manage my mobile media. With it, I’m buying music on a regular basis from Amazon’s MP3 store and can synchronizing media to nearly any device. Today, I took an early look at the latest beta version of DoubleTwist for Mac — v 1.0b16 — and the new features show it moving far beyond a simple and effective music synchronization application. It’s more useful as a media player and as a way to find software in the Android Market. Yes, DoubleTwist for Mac has integrated with the software store for Android devices.

You can’t actually install or download Market apps in DoubleTwist, but you can scour the store for software by searching for it. The activity is enjoyable on a larger display and I foresee myself using DoubleTwist to find apps whenever I’m armed with my MacBook. When I’m not, I’ll revert to the native Android Market on my Nexus One. DoubleTwist pulls much of the information found in the Market: screenshots, reviews, number of downloads and more. Each app shows a QR code, so it’s a snap to scan it with an Android device’s camera and install the software. The same information is available in a web interface too: just hit up http://apps.doubletwist.com from a browser if you don’t want to install DoubleTwist. That’s just a killer win for Android users. Jon Lech Johansen — aka: DVD Jon and a co-founder of DoubleTwist — tells me that the Windows version of DoubleTwist will see the same Market integration with the next major release.

Podcast search and playback is another new addition to the Mac client; The Windows version gained podcast support earlier this month. For now, DoubleTwist won’t synchronize podcast media to your mobile device, but clearly, that’s the next logical step. Until then, you can search for podcasts and play them back on demand directly through the media player feature of DoubleTwist. The player is revamped in this version as well. Instead of a small corner section of the app for media controls, a new full-width audio player appears at the bottom of the software. One tap hides it while another returns it to view. And video podcasts play within the full size of the application or can be viewed in full screen.

 

The DoubleTwist product is definitely making inroads towards a mass market. What started out as a media transcode and sync platform continues to mature with new features that rival iTunes. And T-Mobile’s pre-installation of DoubleTwist on new MyTouch3G handsets shows that carriers are interested. I’m not waiting for the carriers though — I’m using DoubleTwist on a regular basis and will probably use it daily thanks to the new Market integration.

Related research on GigaOM Pro (sub req’d):

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  1. I would really like to use DoubleTwist but until (if?) it works with the iPhone and will allow me to connect it to a remote media server I am forced to stick with iTunes.

  2. I tried the last version of doubleTwist and it’s got issues that made me not touch it since. It doesn’t stay current with your iTunes library unless you exit it and reload, or force a rescan, which is slow.

    The biggest gripe is that it doesn’t actually sync, it only pushes songs to your phone and leaves them there. That makes it useless for podcasts-since as iTunes remove them (after being played) from a playlist, doubleTwist doesn’t remove them from the phone, even if you resync that playlist. I asked about this of their support and they confirmed that nothing gets removed off your phone unless you manually delete it.

    Well, that’s not syncing by my definition, and there’s little point to doubleTwist for me if it doesn’t sync. All its other features can be accomplished by just dragging and dropping to your mounted SDcard in Finder – except the conversion of videos, which requires you to leave the phone connected during the convert.

  3. No thanks, there are way better options out there that DoubleTwist. Besides this app stinks of “hey Google, look at us, please buy us” with the new iTunes clone look.

    Really original

  4. Found double twist klunky on Windows 7. Horribly slow with a17 gig library. The ability to choose only specified paylists is nice, however. My entire families music collection is in one library, and I am uninterested in filtering through the entire thing to grab only the music I would listen to on the go. And my ipod just collects dust these days. Hate the interface and sound quality, and I’m partial to my bluetooth headset for the gym and riding. Droid does convergence. I dig that.

  5. Looks sweet, the next step I guess would be to actually download and sync apps directly to the device. That would be fun.

  6. I had DoubleTwist when I had a Blackberry/Verizon (ugh), It was not seamless like my iPhone/AT&T (Yeah) and iTunes syncing. It was problematical and I’m so happy I switched.

    P.s. My network coverage is better with AT&T than Verizon. I now get five bars when I’d get none with Verizon. I can listen to internet radio for my entire commute with AT&T. Verizon only half of my commute.

  7. Legal Leads Monday, April 5, 2010

    This is a great article. I’ve been looking into Android phones but didn’t want to for get my apple roots. This application is useful for Android users and Apple fans both.

  8. Hey You all who don’t like DoubleTwist — me neither. What do you use on your Android instead?

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