Shazam launches new always-on menu bar app for Mac

By , Jul 31, 2014

shazam 2

Popular audio identification service Shazam launched a new application for the Mac this morning. It lives in the operating system’s menu bar, and offers a lot of the same features seen in its iOS counterpart, with a few new tricks.

Because it resides in the menu bar, Shazam for Mac is always-on and constantly running in the background listening for audio to identify. Once it recognizes a track, the app offers quick access to lyrics, song info and downloads…

shazam 3

Users are alerted by a standard Notification Center popup when audio has been identified. If it’s a song, clicking the popup takes you to a dedicated page on Shazam’s website with lyrics, music videos, iTunes download links and more.

If the audio is from a TV show, clicking the popup brings up cast lists and other data from IMDB and Wikipedia. As with music, TV show identification is limited to Shazam’s library, which it says is currently some 160 US TV channels.

shazam 1Click to enlarge

Recognition is about as accurate as you’ve come to expect from Shazam. In my testing, the app was able to recognize all of my iTunes music, but I noticed that it struggled to identify more obscure songs from YouTube and SoundCloud.

If you want to check it out, you can find the Shazam app in the Mac App Store for free, and if you don’t already have it, here’s a link to the iOS app as well. It’s also worth repeating that Shazam’s ID tech is being built into Siri for iOS 8.

  • Share:
  • Follow:
  • Naegi

    its not always on ,you can switch it off from the menus bar ,and put on when you need it .

    • Melvco

      right, but then the app’s useless. So it’s either always listening, or it might as well not be active at all.

      • Naegi

        just one or half second to put the switch from off to on ….
        The same thing everyone does on iphone’s …..
        We open the app to track the song
        On macs its easier cause you have in front of you the status bar menu app shazam and in a half second you track the song you want

      • Melvco

        I think it’s being referred to as always-on because that’s the default setting—it’s always listening in the background for recognizable audio.

        Take the OK Google voice command feature in Chrome for example. It’s also considered always-on, but it’s fairly easy to turn off.

      • Naegi

        hmmm .If it works that way ….its not good in my opinion ….

    • Chris

      Cody simply meant by default it’s always available to listen in on audio channels, disabling it is a user preference.

  • sdhn97

    An update for Yosemite with a widget would be cool.. Being able to see tags and whatnot

  • Shripad Sonavnay

    Can you please share the yellow wallpaper in one of the images above

    • ExcitedMuch

      I like your paper, can u give me the link sir? Thanks!

      • Guest

        Hope this fits!

      • ExcitedMuch

        Thanks sir!

      • https://twitter.com/aidanharris1 Aidan Harris

        Nice wallpaper!

    • Flyhigh

      Well, I tried 3 times to give you a link of this wallpaper, but they never passed moderation… Guess you’ll have to find out by yourself.

  • ready1take1

    What is the countdown counting down? I can’t figure out what happens after 4 hours. Does it shut off?