We first heard last week that the startup was working on an iPhone app, and the app itself contains everything you’d expect: You can access every virtual room on the service, where up to five DJs can spin tunes (be sure to check out Coding Soundtrack and Ambient Chillout & Trip Hop, my personal fave). You can also rate songs as lame or awesome and chat with others in the room.
And yes, you can create your own Turntable.fm rooms, or start DJing within a current room, right from within the app.
Turntable.fm was already a massively addictive service — both for sharing your favorite songs or just chilling and listening to what others have queued up — but the iPhone app brings it to another level entirely. Now not only can you play with Turntable.fm without lugging around a laptop, it has become a truly social music service.
Imagine hosting a party where Turntable.fm is your only source of music and friends can manage their queues from their phones and hop in and out of DJ spots.
For an initial release, the app is reasonably polished. Everything takes a bit longer than the desktop version of Turntable.fm — like joining new rooms, or creating a room — but the fact that it works at all is amazing. Surprisingly, it even works well over 3G, although music switching and room joining suffers even more delays because of it.
The only big problem with the app is that it’s practically impossible to select an individual avatar in the room with your finger. Rooms tend to get crowded, and clicking on specific users was already difficult with a mouse on desktops. The service will likely need to add easily accessible lists of users within the rooms to make this process easier, as it’s the only way to fan a Turntable.fm user and check out their stats.
VB's research team is studying web-personalization... Chime in here, and we’ll share the results.