Hitlantis, a radical way to explore new music for listeners with iPhones and iPads is available, at last. Yesterday saw official the release of this app, which we tested in a beta version in February.
Much of the interface and functionality of that early version remains the same, so that review is still worth a read if you’re looking for a neat way to discover new bands to obsess over, although a few things have changed in this new version.
First, the central constellation model of bands circling a central Hitlantis sun remains the app’s most interesting aspect, although we’re happy to note that the on-screen busyness observed in the beta version has been reduced. For starters, viewing the Hitlantis cosmos from a greater distance (which do simply by pinching the touchscreen) now causes smaller, less popular bands’ planets to fade, which makes the screen less crowded.
A couple of issues hurt this first official version though. Even with a WiFi-connected iPhone, load times for musical samples are quite long. The radio function has a new filtering option too, apparently intended to let listeners hear only the musical genre they choose. However, switching off all genres except for Reggae didn’t produce the desired effect.
Even with these quibbles, Hitlantis remains a really clever way to discover new music, especially as a free app.