We7 is a mobile app from the company of the same name, which is a subsidiary of U.K. grocery store giant Tesco PLC. The app is currently available as a free download for both iOS and Android devices, though it appears it is only available in selected territories at the time of writing, presumably due to licensing constraints. This review is based on the iOS version.
We7 is a simple free music-streaming app designed around the principles of creating a custom “station” based on the user’s own tastes. In many respects, it is similar to Last.FM, but lacks an attached social network and instead focuses purely on the music.
In order to use We7, users must first create an account or sign in. This can be done quickly and easily via Facebook Connect — somewhat clumsily implemented here via a pop-up window rather than a call to the native app — or alternatively the user may sign up for a proprietary account by providing some minimal personal information. Either way, once into the app proper, the user is presented with a wide selection of music to listen to. A “miniplayer” bar at the bottom of the screen cycles around popular tracks and can be set playing at any point, while two pages of “stations” (organized according to what is popular and by “theme”) allow the user to jump straight in to a mix of their choice.
Once the music is playing, users may give an individual track the “thumbs up” or “thumbs down” vote, which makes the app more or less likely to serve up that specific track in future. If a track is given a “thumbs up,” it is added as an influencer to the app’s “My Station” function, which provides a continuous mix of music based on the user’s tastes. Tracks may also be skipped or shared on Facebook, Twitter or via email. Sharing to social networks is frictionless with no option to customize the message posted; sharing via email, on the other hand, allows users to change the message as they see fit.
In a nice touch, users are also able to download a station and play it offline when they do not have a mobile data connection, or if they would like to save their mobile data allowance. Whether or not the app attempts to stream music via the user’s mobile data connection can be switched on or off or set to confirm every time as the user desires — if cellular data streaming is disallowed, the download function allows the user to “pre-load” the app with music while they have a reliable connection and then listen to it at will wherever they are.
We7 is a solid music app, and the fact it is available for free (and apparently ad-free, too) makes it a very attractive prospect for those who just like to have some music on in the background without necessarily picking and choosing the exact tracks they’re going to listen to. It’s a pity it’s not presently available in all territories, but as previously noted, this is likely more to do with regional licensing restrictions than anything else. For those who live in a supported territory, We7 is very much a worthwhile addition to their smarphone’s repertoire of media apps.
You can follow We7’s progress with AppData, our tracking service for mobile and social apps and developers.