How To Convert Spotify To MP3

Spotify is a great service. For me, I love to stream music and not have to have tons of MP3 files on my computer.

The best part of Spotify is the custom playlists.

How To Convert Spotify To MP3
This post will show you how to download Spotify MP3s

As soon as you start using Spotify, you naturally like certain songs. Spotify has a propritarty system that gives you fresh custom mixes every week based on your listening and like history.

These contain songs you like, similar artists, and most importantly new artists that might become your next favourite.

Apart from the custom mixes, there is also the Radar Release Mix – which is a collection of artists you like and might like who just released new songs – so you can keep current on your music water cooler talk. And there is also, my favourite, the Discover Weekly playlist which is an AI-curated list with all kinds of artists you like and might like.

This allows you to find, discover and enjoy new music. I love the feeling of discovering a new, awesome song.

By the way, if you like Discovering new songs, check out DiscoverQuickly, which allows you to find new songs faster using the Spotify new music discovery algorithm.

Spotify also has some exclusive music and podcasts, like the Spotify Singles, where artists record covers or new songs exclusively for Spotify at Spotify Studios. Some of their podcasts are exclusive, like the Joe Rogan Podcast.

Streaming Spotify is great, but what about Downloading from Spotify?

You can download Spotify songs and playlists with both Spotify FREE and Spotify Premium. One of the perks of Spotify Premium is that you can download an entire playlist my clicking a toggle.

spotify to mp3 conversion

Another awesome perk that you only get with Spotify Premium is that you can play any song you want anytime. With Spotify Free, you can really only listen to a particular playlist or album, but not a specific song.

You also get the experience of Spotify without the annoying ads, which can get repetitive, and a higher quality version of the song – which I really don't notice TBH.

What I don't like about downloading Spotify from Spotify Premium is that the files are stuck inside your phone, inside your Spotify playlists.

So what's the best way to download Spotify Playlists to MP3?

I created a short tutorial video that walks you through the entire process of downloading a Spotify playlist, or a Spotify song to your computer in high-quality MP3 format – with the complete and correct song meta-data.

Now why is the meta-data important?

To some people it's not. But I like my iTunes library useable – and as soon as you start adding songs you downloaded from the YouTube video version, for example, you lose everything. No more correct artist data. No cover art.

And if you download an album from a torrent site, like ThePirateBay, you will often find that the artist or the album name is replaced by a torrent site – which means annoying meta-data issues.

I hate that because I like to assemble playlists to play in my car using Apple CarPlay. With CarPlay, you can hear the song in full high-quality, and you have the correct album art – which adds to my experience of listening to music. It's just important to me.

So here's how to download Spotify Songs (Or Entire Playlists) To MP3:

In this demonstration I'm using this software.

I find that it makes it really easy, and I like how you can download an entire playlist from Spotify to MP3 with a single click.

Click here to download the software and try it out for yourself:

This saves me not only money, but time and headache because I'm just too busy to fix meta-data manually. Ugh.

If this worked for you, let me know in the comments so other readers know that it works.

5 Important Questions to Ask an Executive Recruitment Firm

5 Important Questions to Ask an Executive Recruitment Firm

Sourcing the best candidates for management positions can be a lengthy and time-consuming process. This is why using an executive recruitment firm to find the perfect fit for your company can be a lifesaver.

But what kinds of questions should you be asking an executive recruitment firm to ensure they are the right agency for you? In this article, we will go through the 5 key questions to ask anyone in executive recruiting. Read on to find out more. 

1. Do You Have Experience with Working With Clients that are in the Same Industry?

A good indication of whether an executive recruitment agency is right for you is whether they have a specialism in working with certain candidates and fields. For example, if you are a tech company, but they only have experience with science-based candidates, this is probably not going to be a good fit.  

Firms that have experience in sourcing in your industry will know the qualities to look for in potential candidates. They will be able to provide you with far superior options. 

2. What is Your Screening and Sourcing Process?

It's important to know that an executive recruitment firm is thorough and diligent in its screening process. This is to ensure that they have an excellent roster of potential candidates. 

You want to know that they have done their background research for each applicant and scored and tested them appropriately to get a good idea of their competency. 

3. How Do You Actively Recruit the Best Applicants?

Networks of talented and able applicants are built over time with recruiters developing key relationships through various channels of communication such as LinkedIn.

You want an executive recruitment firm to play an active role as a headhunter, staying abreast of all current trends and also tenacious in sourcing the right person for a role. Just because a qualified person is in a senior position, doesn't mean they aren't looking for opportunities outside of their current situation. 

An excellent recruitment firm will keep certain candidates in mind and present them with opportunities that will make them reconsider their career path. 

4. What is Your Typical Turnaround When it Comes to Shortlisting?

An executive recruitment firm needs to be flexible when it comes to your requirements, there's no point going with a firm that takes months to shortlist candidates if you have a time-sensitive role that needs filling. 

A competent firm will be able to work with your time scales and deliver a robust shortlist to you within your designated time slot. You don't want to have a senior role that is unfilled for a long period of time which could then affect your business.

5. How Will You Sell the Role and Company to Potential Candidates?

It's essential that an executive recruitment firm understands your ethos and how you wish your company to be seen by potential employees and also the wider public. 

This is where you can tell if they have done their homework and can present your work culture to those that could have an interest in working at your company. An ineffective or incorrect message could be damaging to both you and the applicant. Listen carefully to how the recruitment firm sells your vision. 

Using an Executive Recruitment Firm: Where Can I Find out More?

We hope this article on the 5 questions you should ask an executive recruitment firm has given you plenty of ideas to ensure you choose the best one for your purpose. 

Developing good relations with recruiting services can be vital in sourcing the best candidates for your company. If you enjoyed this article, check out our other blogposts!

 

How The Coronavirus Pandemic Influenced The Housing Market

Since the start of the global pandemic, the world has been affected in ways we never would have imagined. Now one year into the “new” normal, people have found themselves living and working in modified ways trying to make ends meet.

How The Coronavirus Pandemic Influenced The Housing Market

As the world lived through the uncertainties of 2020 and now into 2021, throughout the country, income and housing affordability has been a concern for many people during this pandemic.

With so many people losing jobs, or dealing with reduced working hours, a shrewd strategy to weather the pandemic has been to look for more affordable housing. Reducing your housing costs is one way you can cut monthly expenses.

At first glance, while seemingly a prudent decision to lower housing costs, it appears the data on housing affordability tells us otherwise. Interestingly enough, we see an interesting trend emerge.

Surprising Trends In The Housing Market

How The Coronavirus Pandemic Influenced The Housing Market

The surprising trend we see emerging is that for the most part, throughout the country, more affluent areas have seen a decrease in rents while lower income, less affluent neighborhoods have seen their rents increase, sometimes significantly.

The question is now, “Why would this be?”

When the pandemic hit, the first response for many people was to move out of more affluent, urban neighborhoods and into more suburban, rural, less affluent neighborhoods.

Here are some of the reasons why:

Looking to lower their housing costs because of job insecurity or financial hardship, people moved out of expensive, urban markets.

For those that were lucky enough to keep their jobs and transition to working remotely (using tools like Zoom) as a result of the pandemic, they found that their need for “space” changed.

There is growing number of people who require that their homes double as work and home spaces. If you work from home, you may need more space, or at least more space that is quiet and clean. Many jobs may not come back and will remain as remote work.

For some, children who were in regular public and private school, have migrated to schooling from home. This again, can require more space and attention than that housing residents had originally planned when they picked their “forever” home.

For students who are now doing online schooling and home schooling – they need more space to accommodate those needs.

In other words, people's new pandemic lives generally require more space per dollar.

This change in the types of housing people were looking for, resulted in rents decreasing in the more affluent, urban neighborhoods, and rising in lower income neighborhoods.

Some of the richest areas in New York have seen populations drop. Wealthy New Yorkers have been leaving to go to secondary residences.

Sadly, with the pandemic already defined by inequality, this serves to generate even more potential for income disparity on those who are most affected by it.

Queens, Richmond and Kings County

How The Coronavirus Pandemic Influenced The Housing Market

Looking specifically at 3 of the 5 regions that make up the counties of NYC: Queens County (Queens), Kings County (Brooklyn) and Richmond County (Staten Island), you can see that these counties (certain areas that are traditionally expensive, large urban areas have seen their rents decrease).

Having grown up and lived in Queens County near St John’s University, Queens County saw a significant decrease in their rents by -13.90%, while housing affordability in Kings county decreased by -18.20% and Richmond County by -2.90%.

Again more expensive parts of the country saw a decrease in rents while cheaper places saw rents rise and in this area, rents decreased significantly. Again still out of the reach of lower income households.

The upshot of all this is that cities may become less oppressive as urbanites move to the suburbs to find more space… both in terms of land and distance from one's neighbor.

Filmora Review

Here's the quick summary on Filmora. For general use, Filmora is excellent.

The UI (user interface) is straightforward and pretty easy to learn.

Filmora Review

It's fast, easy to learn, and offers enough advanced features to keep you content for years. There are loads of motion graphics, lower thirds, and neat little tricks to make your videos stand out and give the impression you're a pro at video editing.

The truth is, having those little flairs, like lower thirds that move dynamically, shows professionalism and polish that keep engagement and helps make your video significantly better.

Wondershare is simple to use and really lets you unleash your creativity without getting bogged down with technical hurdles.

Pros

Very polished interface.

Inexpensive.

Loads of cool visual effects and overlays (check out the selection below)

Filmora Review

Cons

Filmora is a Chinese company, and sometimes the training videos are a little bit off in terms of consistency and branding. For example, Filmora 10 and Filmora X are the same product. This is a little confusing. Also, the differences between Filmora 9 and Filmora Pro were not laid out clearly on the website.

I did find that Filmora 9 crashed periodically. This seems to be something they have sorted out and fixed with the release of Filmora 10.

4K exporting is a little bit slow, but you can customize the output to fine-tune your final product.

So Is Filmora Any Good?

Many video editing programs claim to offer professional results, but the interface is difficult to understand and the results are not ideal.

I have used Camtasia, Screenflow, Snagit, iMovie, Sony Vegas, and Filmora. With that in mind, I have tried and nearly immediately deleted Shortcut, Lightworks, DaVinci Resolve, Blender, Openshot, HitFilm, and a few others. The main problem with the free video editors is that they suck! They have really old-looking UI's and they are just not easy to figure out and get started using.

Filmora is a gem in that somebody with very little editing experience can jump in and produce something nice-looking a matter of minutes. Take a look at the interface below – it's very intuitive. And it's fun to work with!

Filmora Review

Of all the video editors, Filmora has the fun factor locked in. It's made for the YouTube-TikTok-IG age. There are silly and fun overlays that I think other video editors would think were beneath them. (Looking at you Adobe Premiere!)

One of the runner features is the split-screen feature. You can actually drag different clips into pre-divided frames and have an instant split-screen effect like the one used in the documentary on Woodstock.

Filmora is one of a few consumer-level tools that actually delivers a great editing experience and a simple workflow.

Wondershare

Filmora was originally released as Wondershare Video Editor, but after version 5.1.1 it was rebranded as Filmora. Wondshare also has some other tech-related products like DrFone which helps clear our iPhone data and related options.

Can I Use Wondershare on Mac and PC?

Wondershare can be used on both Mac and PC, however, you will need to buy a separate license for both platforms, unfortunately.

It's made for non-professional video editors. Great for anyone who wants to add polish and sizzle to their YouTube videos. That's not to say you can't use it for more elaborate projects, but I wouldn't suggest using it for a full-length documentary.

Filmora omits more advanced features that you can find in more established competitors like CyberLink's PowerDirector (for example, motion tracking, Multicam, and support for 360-degree videos.) But if you're not planning on using those, you get a ton of value out of Filmora.

Pricing 

Filmora offers a free trial download, but the limitation is you can only export footage 10 times, and you will have a Filmora watermark on your exported projects.

Filmora offers an annual subscription model (as Adobe does for Premiere Pro ), but if you can spring for a little bit more, you can secure a permanent license. The Mac version costs $44.99 per year or $59.99 for lifetime access, while the Windows version is $39.99 and also $59.99 lifetime. Both of those options are really great value for what you get in Filmora.

A paid Filmora license also gets you a bunch more effects, royalty-free music, and motion graphics to use in your video projects, of course, it removes watermarks and adds 24/7 technical support. New effect collections are also added every month for paying customers. I have only used the MAC version of Filomora, although the two versions are very similar. The main difference, apart from subscription pricing, is that the Mac version doesn't have Easy mode and Freeze Frame.

Multiple Tracks

With Filmora you can add multiple tracks. There is not a limit on how many tracks, so you can easily add elements and sound to spice up your videos.

One nice thing about the tracks is Filmora keeps them separated with the video tracks in the middle, the audio tracks at the bottom, and the overlay tracks on the top. This really makes it easy to organize your project if you have multiple tracks.

Filmora Review

Filmora X New Features

Perhaps the most exciting new feature of Filmora X is motion tracking. You can have a cartoon head follow a face or easily blur them out with an effect called “Face-Off”

This can be useful for creating those catchy GIF memes.

Filmora Review

Audio Ducking

Audio Ducking is a new feature in Filmora X. Ducking drops the sound of background music/noise slightly when a person is talking in a clip so they are not competing with the background music. This is perfect for amateur filmmakers, however, professionals would balk at such a feature. For most users of Filmora, this can again help improve the video without any extra time.

Touch Bar (Mac) – Preview and scrub through your timeline using the touch bar.

The rendering of projects is much faster in Filmora X.

There are a ton of new filters to give your clips a little extra oomph. Some of these are quite dramatic, so think of these as Instagram Filters for your video clips. I think this is where Filmora really shines for amateur filmmakers and YouTubers.

The key to success online is grabbing and holding attention. And the filters and overlays are what really set Filmora apart for me. Just a little bit of work and you can make any video stand out and grab attention. Try it for yourself and you'll see what I mean.

Filmora X: Color Correction

There's a large number of preset color filters, but if you want more precise color controls, the tools are pretty generic. Each clip has a color tab, where you can adjust sliders like contrast, brightness, and color temperature, or let the application automatically adjust color and white balance –

A new tool in Filmora X is color matching. You select a clip in your timeline, then, using a comparison view, select another clip to match it with. So you can easily adjust one clip to have a similar color palette to the second. This shows a lot of promise and is very helpful if you have filmed under different light sources or shadows. It's a quick and dirty way of getting a consistent look across various clips in your project.

Final Thoughts

Wondershare Filmora is a great video editing software that balances powerful features with an intuitive interface at an affordable price point. It supports all modern video formats, as well as HD and 4K video editing and output.  

It's not a professional video editing suite, but most beginners and intermediates will be happy with the results.

Download a Filmora for Mac or Windows today.

Public Mobile Review

Ready to learn about the nity-grity of Public Mobile? Should you consider switching? Here's everything you need to know!

Public Mobile Review

My Public Mobile Story:

Cellphones: a necessary evil. Do you ever look at your cellphone bill and wonder, “Why it is so high?” This blog post could be the most important thing you read this year.

So first, a little backstory.

I was on Telus and had been for years. They had me and my wife hooked on a “grandfathered” business-only plan that was no longer offered. We were paying about $287 per month! And that's with no data overages.

Even on that expensive Telus plan, we still had to be careful about data, as we sometimes went over the data limit. Telus, like all the major cell phone carriers, has harsh penalties for going over-limit on your data plan.

We were stuck on this plan because we had a “business” account and had an unlimited amount of US-calling. I run a marketing agency where we build funnels and run advertising for small businesses

Even though we were calling US numbers less and less (Hello Zoom!) we were afraid to leave the plan, because we could never get that US-long distance place back if we left.

Now, truth be told, it was a little annoying that I couldn’t call Public Mobile and ask a rep some specific questions about porting my number – which was important to me. But eventually the desire to save a lot of money each month prompted me to give it a go.

Public Mobile Review

I'm a little embarrassed to admit that it took us about 4 months of hemming and hawing before actually making the switch.

The switch was painless and quick.

So what is Public Mobile?

Public Mobile is a low-cost SIM-only service provider.

In my opinion, Public Mobile is the best, lowest-cost self-serve cell phone platform in Canada.

Essentially, they are a discount prepaid-only carrier that runs on the Telus network. (Public Mobile was bought out by Telus in 2013; originally they had been an independent carrier.)

The Telus high-speed 4G-LTE network provides extensive coverage, but every cell phone plan from Public Mobile is limited to “3G speed” data, but honestly, I have not noticed a difference. Since all the plans are set to 3G speed, you can turn off LTE on your phone.

The nice thing about it being a pre-paid plan is that you won't have a surprise by going over your talk or data limit. This is also a good thing to keep in mind if you have a teenager or somebody who doesn't pay attention to the data limits on their plan.

My biggest hurdle had always been that I was skeptical about the quality of the service and the coverage. If it's so much less, there must be some sort of nasty catch, right?

But the truth is that Public Mobile, being a self-serve department of Telus, has exactly the same quality of coverage.

Public Mobile Network Coverage

Telus uses the Bell Towers across Canada, so the coverage is just as good as Bell or Telus. This is important, because I live in a slightly rural area, and I have a cottage that is well-hidden from the world on a very private lake without motorized boats.
It's remote and beautiful.

cottage by lakehouse

And one of the main concerns was I wanted to verify that we had coverage there – which we should have because we had coverage with Telus. We have had visitors to our cottage who are on Rogers and they had really spotty coverage there. Anyway, we actually activated a test phone just to verify it worked and it did.

That gave up the go ahead to leave our plan at Telus after over a decade and switch to Public Mobile.

Is there an activation fee?

There is no activation fee with Public Mobile.

Notifications:

I get notifications when I get a referral, make a payment, or hit 75% of my data threshold. So that gives me plenty of time to adjust.

Here's what I see when I make a new referral to Public Mobile and reduce my bill:

public mobile referral code

If you want to sign up for Public Mobile, use my link and you'll get $10 off your first month.

IMPORTANT: Make note of this referral code when signing up to activate that bonus: WX60K0

You will need to enter it in step 4 (payment section) of the activation PublicMobile signup page to get your discount.

Can I Port/Use My Current Phone With Public Mobile?

Yes, you can just use your current number. There is no charge for using your current number, and the process is very simple.

In fact, you need to bring your own phone to Public Mobile. There are no contracts, so you can leave at any time. So use your current phone, and if you want an upgrade, buy a new phone straight out. Easy (and cheaper in the long run.)

My wife and I ported our numbers no problem.

How do I switch to Public Mobile?

To signup with Public Mobile, you do it all online. Use this link to get a discount on your first month. Be sure to use this referral code to get your discount: WX60K0

You do need a new Public Mobile SIM card. These cost $10 at Walmart in the electronic department. You need to ask at the counter. They are one-size (3-in-1) SIM cards with a detachable part to fit all SIM card trays. (Sounds weird, but it's easy.)

If you have an unlocked phone already, getting started is as simple as buying a SIM, activating it, and inserting it into your phone. You will be prompted to do this as you complete the signup process.

If you don't have a SIM card tool, you can use a pin to pop out the SIM card tray.
Everything else is done online and in the peace of your own home.

How To Sign Up For Public Mobile & Port Your Current Number From Another Cell Phone Company

I have a video demonstrating how this works:

Public Mobile Plans:

Every cell phone plan with Public Mobile includes nationwide long distance, unlimited texting internationally, voicemail and caller ID. They are charged on a 30-day billing cycle.

Here are the current Public Mobile plans:

Public Mobile Review
Public Mobile Plans

The plans are straightforward with no hidden gotchas. For example, even the lowest priced plan allows international texting and picture messages.

Voicemail, Call Display, Call Waiting, Call Forwarding and Conference Calling are included in all Unlimited Talk plans from Public Mobile.

Incoming from anywhere on the planet (when you are in Canada, that is) does not use up your Plan Minutes.

The plans all feel fair, which is kinda weird for a cellphone company.

They do have some addons so you can customize your plan and still keep it as inexpensive as possible. Personally, I'm on the $50/mo plan because I call to the States semi-frequently.

Public Mobile Add Ons:

They have some good add on plans. You can add these international long distance plans.

We have several long distance options available for calling from Canada including:

  • 1000 Minutes to the U.S. for $15;
  • 1000 Minutes to the U.K. for $15; 
  • 750 Minutes to India and Pakistan for $15;
  • 500 Minutes to China, Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan for $15;
  • 100 Minutes to the Philippines for $15 
  • 300 International Minutes for $15 
  • 500 Canada-wide Minutes for $5  

*Note: these minutes roll-over to the next month… and stay in your account as long as you have an active plan, even if you drop the addon package…which is awesome!

In addition, you can add data plans, and even US roaming plans if you plan to travel to the US.

Regrets About Switching To Public Mobile:

Regrets? My only regret is that I didn't switch earlier. I get the same coverage without the whopping bill from Telus each month. I save literally OVER $200 per month! That's $2400 per year in savings.

Who own Public Mobile?

Public Mobile is owned by Telus. You are basically getting the exact same service as Telus for a fraction of the cost.

What are the drawback of Public Mobile?

You can't speak to somebody on the phone. Because of this, it might not be the best for older people who don't have anyone to help them get set up… not that it's very difficult, mind you.

They do have an active support community, and you can get a quick answer to your specific question from them. I have used this forum and received a prompt, personalized response. They do reward customers who answer questions in the community for a phone bill.

They don't have overseas support. So if you plan on using your phone overseas, you'd need to look at getting a temporary phone for all your awesome travels.

Lastly, I was hesitant about 3G speed. But I have found not a single time I have been waiting for something to load. I use Google Maps, Taxbot to track (and write off) my mileage, and sometimes on the go, I might use Safari and FIFA Companion App.

I have watched YouTube and it works fine – but I try not to blow through data by watching video while I am on data.

I have not noticed a difference in any way.

How to the rewards work?

You get $2 off for setting up Autopay – paying your phone bill automatically with a credit card. This makes sense and it's one less bill to take up your time.

You also get $1 off for every customer you refer per month. If you refer 10 customers, and they remain active, you would get $10 off your phone bill. This is a way to further reduce a necessary recurring expense. You also get a one-time $10 bonus for referring a new customer that first month.

There is also a long-term Loyalty Bonus: you get $1 off every 30 days after your first year as a customer, $2 off after your second year, $3 after three years, etc.

Support Agent Bonus: You get up to $20 off every 30 days when you contribute to their online customer support community.

If you join Public Mobile through this link you'll get a $10 credit on your account.

IMPORTANT NOTE: If you already signed up and did not use a referral code, you can contact support and ask them to apply this to your account to claim your discount.

WX60K0 (Those 0's are Zeros by the way!)

What is the average speed of 4G and 3G data?

You can check coverage and network types in your area at the Public Mobile support page. The Telus network ranked second for download speeds in both the 4G and 3G network categories in Tutela's 2020 “Mobile Experience Report,” tests showed an average speed of 15.68Mbits/sec for 4G downloads and 5.30Mbits/sec for 3G downloads.

Public Mobile Cheapest Plan:

The cheapest Public Mobile plan is the $15/month 100 Minutes Canada-wide Talk Plan. This can be customized with some low-priced add-ons. With AutoPay, this is only $13/mo – plus you will get an extra 250MB of 3G data.

Why this plan rocks: As a base plan, this is everything most people need. You get 100 minutes of outgoing calls, unlimited incoming calls, no long distance charges within Canada and unlimited international text and picture messaging.

By the way, if you want to see just how much you pay for recurring charges each month is to download a cool app called Bobby.co.

The Public Mobile Plan I am on:

The best premium plan offered by Public Mobile is the $50 plan, which includes 8GB of 3G-speed data, nationwide unlimited calls, and free long-distance to the United States. This is great if you have relatives in the US. And the 8GB of data is plenty for streaming Spotify and doing whatever without worrying about hitting the limit. (I don't watch Netflix while on data.)

Check out the plans by clicking here.

Public Mobile: Should You Switch To Public Mobile?

Bottom line is that if you consider a cell phone a necessary expense, as I do, why not reduce that bill as much as possible so you can put that money towards something more productive?

Use this Public Mobile code to claim your $10 credit when you create your account: WX60K0

I'm putting my savings into this investment and into this one.

If you are Canadian and want to earn some free money every day, check out this blog post.