Amazon’s New Preview Jukebox

Amazon's new jukebox have quietly rolled out a nifty new music preview feature, allowing much more convenient previews than before. The site’s erstwhile preview system was always a bit hit and miss, lacking in some obvious functions, but the new system, comprising of a pop-up box control panel with more than a whiff of iTunes about it is much better and demonstrates that it’s not just the better download sites that allow you to try before you buy.

The new feature makes it mush easier to browse music samples and discover artists and tracks that you might like, with all the pertinent information and links near at hand. Tracks from albums are queued up and played in order, so you can get a feel for a whole albums without having to budge.

The Preview section has been reorganised, with the new Amazon Music Sampler coming first – clicking on a link opens up the preview window. Customers can now jump between albums by the same artists, or even samples of recommendations and top sellers, from the same window. For convenience, the Add to Basket button is never too far away.

Samples are streamed to your PC without firing up an external media player, and most samples are 20Kps quality-wise.

Try it out

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Fraser Lovatt

Fraser Lovatt has spent the last fifteen years working in publishing, TV and the Internet in various capacities, and believes that they will be seperate platforms for at least a while yet. His main interests at the moment are exploring where Linux is taking home entertainment and how technology is conferring technical skills on more and more people. Fraser Lovatt was born in the same year that 2001: A Space Odyssey was delighting and confusing people in the cinemas, and developed a lifelong love of technology as soon as he realised that things could be taken apart, sometimes put back together again, but mostly left in bits or made into something the original designer hadn't quite planned upon. At school he was definitely in the ZX Spectrum/Magpie/BMX camp, rather than the BBC Micro/Blue Peter/well-behaved group. This is all deeply ironic as he later went on to spend nine years working at the BBC. After a few years of working as a bookseller in Scotland, ("Back when it was actually a skilled profession" he'll tell anyone still listening), he moved to England for reasons he can't quite explain adequately to himself. After a couple of publishing jobs punctuated by sporadic bursts of travelling and photography came the aforementioned nine years at the BBC where he specialised in internet technologies and video. These days his primary interests are Java, Linux, videogames and pies - and if they're not candidates for convergence, then what is?