Face Off: Airtel’s Wynk vs Times Internet’s Gaana

By March 23rd, 2015 AT 11:28 AM

Airtel recently made an entry into the overcrowded music streaming app space by launching Wynk Music app. Currently, the app competes with San Francisco based Rdio, which made its entry in the Indian market by acquiring Dhingana and Times Internet’s Gaana, and Saavn.

We spent last two weeks with premium subscriptions of Airtel’s Wynk and Times Internet’s Gaana.

User Interface & Music Discovery:

Airtel’s Wynk was surprisingly clean and easier to navigate. One can choose their regional music choice on the home screen and the app pushes music of their choice. I could find songs segregated into popular, new releases, top albums, based on mood, regional and International categories. While Wynk doesn’t try to  push a lot of content in the app’s homepage, music discovery is something where it lags. There’s discovery based on what’s popular, what’s new and mood, I can’t specifically just browse through strings of songs from unknown artists. Wynk has kept it simple.

Gaana-3 Gaana-1

On the other hand, Gaana’s home screen is like a never-ending homepage reminding me of 9gag’s home screen, where you just scroll and scroll. This is a great way to discover new music as Gaana tries to come up with all possible combinations of categories that one could search for but it also makes the app a bit heavy on internet consumption, not to mention that home screen is clogged with too much content. Besides clogging the home screen, Gaana also has a discover tab where one can search music based on genre.

Wynk-1  Wynk-2   Wynk-3

Besides that, both apps are equipped with radio feature for music discovery. On Gaana, there are channels from Radio Mirchi, which are essentially songs grouped together by either the brand or individuals. Radio channels on Airtel’s Wynk app are just collections such as International hits, Bollywood hits and so on, but does nothing to help with music discovery. This is where Airtel could curate and benefit.

Music collection:

Both the apps seem to have decent music collection. I checked couple of indie songs that my friend curates, popular Bollywood songs and US top 10 songs, and found them on the both the apps.

Subscription packages / ease of subscribing:

Gaana-2 Wynk-4

Now this is where things get tricky. Ghana comes with two packages – with no ads and the one that allows offline downloads and multi-device sync (Gaana+). The package with no ads is available for Rs 199 per year and the other one is available for Rs 1099 per year. This is if you subscribe from the web version of the app with your credit card or net banking facility. Prices are different if you try to purchase the Gaana+ package from your mobile device, yet Gaana allows one to purchase the subscription package from Google Play Store, via operator billing and through credit / debit card on your mobile device.

Wynk Music on the other hand has subscription plans starting at Rs 99 per month for Android users and Rs 120 per month for iOS users. If an user is on Airtel connection then they are not charged for browsing through the app and only charged for streaming a song or downloading it.

In all both the apps provide similar subscription plans (For Android users, Wynk is costlier for iOS users).

Music Downloads:

Both the apps provide the ability to down music for offline usage with DRM protection. Which means that you can play the song even if you do not have a working Internet connection, however you need the app to play them. This is a good feature for those who do not have a flawless Internet connectivity on the go, however it also defeats the purpose of the music streaming app as you end up storing the music files on your mobile device.

Gaana App TT rating

User Experience: 3/5

Music discovery: 4/5

Music collection: 5/5

Subscription packages / ease of subscribing: 4/5

Music Downloads: 4/5

Download Gaana from Google Play Store / Download Gaana on iOS device

Wynk App TT rating

User Experience: 4/5

Music discovery: 2/5

Music collection: 5/5

Subscription packages / ease of subscribing: 3/5

Music Downloads: 4/5

Download Wynk Music from Google Play Store / Download Wynk on iOS device

Apurva is a tech enthusiast who loves her gadgets and talks about digital media usage. She is currently developing news.thedigest.co and works for an IT company.

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