sophinisba: Gwen looking sexy from Merlin season 2 promo pics (gwen orly by visualwit)
Sophinisba Solis ([personal profile] sophinisba) wrote2014-03-13 08:09 am

Android phone help

Hey there, Internet, I could use some help! So I switched from a plain old talking phone to my first smartphone about six months ago and it's been loads of fun, but I still haven't figured out how to download and listen to music or podfic on it. /o\

I used to use an iPod touch and I would take care of all the synching stuff in iTunes, but I can't do that anymore.

I have Google Play/Play Music, of course, I'm pretty sure that came loaded on the phone but I also went to the trouble of connecting my accounts and uploading all the music from my computer to this cloud.

The thing is, Google Play seems to be mostly set up for streaming, which is no use for me. I have a really limited data plan so I want to be able to download things at home and then listen to them when I'm out walking. After I'd had this phone for about four months my sister showed me how you're supposed to be able to download a track by bringing it up in your library and then hitting the pushpin icon (thanks, Google, that was super intuitive) but when I try to do this I always just get the message "Can't download music right now."

Sometimes I manage to navigate to a podfic right on my phone and I think I've downloaded and opened the mp3 from there, but then I need to use another app and when I try to go back to the mp3 it's gone. Safari won't load anything when I'm offline and I don't know where else to look for the file.

Ack I'm super embarrassed to admit that I can't get this when it seems like a really basic thing! I mean the thing is I don't miss it terribly because most of the time I just want to listen to podcasts, and I handle that with another app, BeyondPod, and that works fine. Anyway that is my tale of woe! I appreciate your help, thanks!
anatsuno: a women reads, skeptically (drawing by Kate Beaton) (Default)

[personal profile] anatsuno 2014-03-13 01:50 pm (UTC)(link)
I'm going to advocate for the basic if unwieldly: plug in your phone to your computer and move files from one to the other that way? if you use a MAC this will be slightly more convoluted - Macs refuse to see Android devices as external drives - but in that case you should be able to install AirDroid - this is basically like a cloud account allowing you to upload files from the web (so, for example from a browser on your phone or a browser on your mac) into a place where you can easily retrieve them later fir use on your phone.

I haven't tried it yet but that's one of the solutions I have envisioned for similar issues.
havocthecat: the lady of shalott (Default)

[personal profile] havocthecat 2014-03-13 04:41 pm (UTC)(link)
That's what I do! Or I buy mp3s from Amazon player and use them on my phone. I do both, actually.
havocthecat: the lady of shalott (Default)

[personal profile] havocthecat 2014-03-13 04:58 pm (UTC)(link)
I do! It's called Amazon MP3, and I can play both songs I have purchased and songs which I have loaded onto my phone with a USB cable. I got it through the Google Play store.
themadlurker: (Default)

[personal profile] themadlurker 2014-03-13 04:32 pm (UTC)(link)
I don't have any useful advice re: android, because I don't have one, but I'm pretty sure you're not the one making it difficult; it seems like a lot of mobile devices are designed perversely to encourage you to use them the way the company in question wants: apple wants you to use itunes for everything, and I guess google/android wants you to use its streaming services instead. (Honestly I've heard screaming matches between family members and android devices that wouldn't play nicely with different content services. Well. The screaming was mostly one-sided, obviously.)
themadlurker: (Default)

[personal profile] themadlurker 2014-03-13 07:41 pm (UTC)(link)
Yes and you just have to hope the windows system will try hard enough to make it easy to switch to their product to make up for how hard mac wants it to be for you to leave them behind! I tend to get annoyed with windows/google more often but that's just a function of how much more I use their stuff.
piscaria: (Default)

[personal profile] piscaria 2014-03-13 10:07 pm (UTC)(link)
This is something I have struggled with a lot, too. I still don't have a super easy solution, and have pretty much given up on making my Mac and my Android talk to each other (honestly, I'm mostly just counting the days until I am eligible to get an iPhone), but this is what I do:

* I mostly download podfic through my phone's browser
* I use Easy Unrar Lite to open zipped files from the Audiofic Archive
* I use iTag to keep my podfic library organized by fandom, reader, etc. and to wrangle cover art
* I keep a link to the MyFiles folder on my home screen so that it's easy to move files from the downloads folder into the "podfic" folder I made in my music folder
* I use the Android Music Player that came with the phone to actually play everything

It's not perfect -- listening to long podfic, especially, is really frustrating because the phone never remembers where I left off. But it's better than not listening to podfic on my phone at all.
piscaria: (Default)

[personal profile] piscaria 2014-03-14 12:22 am (UTC)(link)
MyFiles is the name of the app. It should probably already be on your phone, unless it is a version-specific thing. I found mine listed with the other apps. When you open it up, it lists things by "All Files, Images, Videos, Music, and Documents." That is important when you realize that only MP3 files in the Music folder will show up in your media player (at least on my phone . . .). But from that app, you can go into "All Files" to get to your downloads folder, and then it's easy to select a file and move it to the folder you want.

I hope that helps!