I don’t listen to Pakistani music a lot. Once in a while when a song hits me, I go online and try to download it from one of the many music streaming websites, also hoping that the site does not inflict a virus on my PC. Don’t get me wrong. I am not a snob and I love Pakistani music. But consider me lazy. I don’t have the patience to go through a gazillion sites to find a song that I heard on TV or to download a song from YouTube and then convert it. Which is why I would often rely on the services of SoundCloud – a big music database which should probably have separate tags for quality music and trashy covers. To finally find an app like Patari that has a wonderful collection of all our artists without the hassle of going through spammy websites is more than a relief.
I’ll be honest here and say that I did not sign up for Patari’s beta website when it first went live. But when their android app’s beta was released over the weekend, I knew I had to try it – partially because of that amazing UI. The first time I opened the app, the landing page was more than welcoming. The graphics have a very homely feel and you instantly feel that you are using and app that celebrates Pakistani music. So I logged into the app and the homepage greets you with all the highlights of the week – an instant collection of music for people who don’t know where to start.
Needless to say that the team has done an outstanding job on the interface. You can roam around the app using a sidebar menu. It lets you search their huge database based on a song or an artist. If you don’t know what to listen, head on over to their Compilation which has categories like Pop, Sufi-Rock, Best of the 90’s, Best of Coke Studio. They even have ‘Mood’ categories, so you are bound to find something you like.
I found the song I was looking for on the homepage, Zeb Bangash’s hauntingly beautiful OST for a popular TV show Diyaar-e-Dil. The song took a little while to stream, but the wait was worth it. The sound quality is absolutely wonderful. No disappointments there! The app, like the Patari website, also has artist profiles so you can queue up your current favourite artists songs and play them in the background while you browse through your phone.
Since it is still in the beta phase so the app is not totally flawless. But interestingly, all the current users are basically beta testers and the response has been quite overwhelming. When I joined the beta testing community, people had posted all the problems and flaws that they had faced while using the app. Some of the most common problems were the app crashing on some Android versions (my own app crashed after I hopped through some 10 songs in excitement), the repeat one track function seems to be troubling and the slider freezes sometimes.
The team has been diligently working on solving all the issues being faced by users. One of the most prominent flaws is that Patari keeps running even if you turn on any other music player or if you attend a call on Skype. If the app could have a cache for offline listening that would be a relief to many. Some songs stream quite easily while others take forever – this could be a WiFi issue too, we can’t be sure. Also, any songs you play start piling up in a queue in the sidebar. Now, a sidebar really isn’t a place to put your songs. This needs checking. The app interface needs a little tweak here and there. For instance, the app needs a search bar on the top at all times.
But I’m pretty sure the app will come out on top in no time when these minor issues are resolved. We wish the team Goodluck!
If you want to start using Patari, sign up on their website and drop them a DM on Twitter. They will guide you from there on.