Use (and Useability Issues) of the Naim app (IOS and Android)

Hi all,

This topic is ment to be about the use (and useability) of the Naim app (on IOS and Android) to control and manage your music-library, and play music through your Naim HW.

In order to not drawn the (my) questions/issues about the useability of Naim app (on IOS and in the comments around the (in my view excellent!) Naim streaming Hifi HW, I decided to open this new topic.

So its this topic is NOT about Roon - that takes away the matter of managing your library from the Naim app. In fact, if i understand it correctly, the Naim app is not required if you use your Naim HW as a Roon ready music device.

This topic is also NOT about sound quality when playing your music from different sources (ex Qobuz versus TIDAL versus UpNP for ripped or acquired disigital music files on disk).

As you will find, i have quite some issues with this app. But I have noticed (from previous discussions in streaming audio), that there seems to be quite a difference (in functionality and behaviour) between the app on IOS and on Android.

Also, there seems to be quite a difference of opinion on how good the Naim app is, depending on whether you see it as an app that allows you to “play your digital music” on your Naim HW (where YOU know where and how the music is stored), or whether you expect the Naim app to help you in “managing your digital music collection” over different sources (such as - in my case - a huge Qobuz collection and a smaller number of digital music files on a file server).

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Good luck.

I asked to be a beta tester from an accessibility perspective some months back. Despite fairly effusive praise in the mainstream media the Naim app is merely functional and appears to be given a priority not dissimilar to remote controls. Here is your high class product and here is something else we’re obliged to provide but which isn’t really our focus.

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I have been a long-time Android user but the failings of the Naim app on Android led me to buy an iPad for the better functionality offered and as a very expensive remote control for Naim equipment it is very good. I still use the Android app occasionally on my second system (I have a Google Pixel 3a phone) and whilst the difference has diminished it is still not as responsive as when using the iPad.

I am suffering quite a lot from unresponsiveness on Android, using a Samsung Galaxy A 10.1 tablet from 2019 with Android 10. More or less every time the app loads (and this is every time I switch between apps, and every time the screen wakes up) it takes from typically 2 seconds up to 10 seconds until the app responds to touches. On my Motorola phone, also with Android 10, there is an occasional slight delay but nothing like this.

I’m in the beta group and we have started to look into this last week. I also had display issues with the NDX2 and while testing various things I thought to have found the cause: When I logged out from Qobuz in the Naim app, it became responsive. After logging back in, unresponsive again. This seemed to me to be clearly reproducible. As I don’t need Qobuz in the Naim app (as I usually use Roon), I stayed logged out to confirm.

On the next day, the app was still responsible, and so I thought this is it. Unfortunately, another day later the problem was back, and stayed like this on subsequent days. It still is (I just checked), so this shot down my hypothesis. I’d like to get to the bottom of this to report in the beta group. If anyone has any information about unresponsiveness on their Android, please post.

Regarding the user interface on Android, I have two main gripes:

  1. Difficult to discover sort options and forced interaction
  • When you go to the (Qobuz) Albums or Artist tabs, it first shows only a selection of albums/artists (most recently added?) and there is no sort option visible.
  • Then you have to scroll down to see the “More” option and touch it
  • Now the sort menu is visible

When I was a new user, it took me quite a while to find “More” at all, as it is scrolled out of view by default. I seem to remember from the short time that tried the app on iOS that the “More” is visible at the top of the preview pane instead of the bottom out of view, i.e. much easier to discover. Now that I know, I still find it annoying having to do this every time.

  1. Inefficient scrolling, no alphabetic access
  • On iOS when scrolling through the albums/artists, iOS displays an alphabet next to the scroll bar, so to got to a letter you simply touch it. This is a feature provided by iOS.
  • On Android itself, there seem to be various ways such a quick scroll can be provided, i.e. it is inconsistent between apps in general. E.g. the Google apps like Contacts display a letter touch option while you scroll, though other apps do not. Seems that the app is required to do something special.
  • The Naim app has no facility for this nor makes Android show one, so you just have a simple and very narrow scroll bar.
  • To scroll through a long list, you have to either swipe a lot, or you can drag the narrow scroll bar, but it is difficult to touch (and to discover that you can)
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I use the app on iOS, android, using iPhone 6s, latest SE and iPad + old Samsung A3.

The only issues I have had can be put down to the network occasionally playing up and impacting on the app at that time.

Overall, having used Linn, Roon, Mconnect and Bubble, the Naim up does what I want it to do, ie accessing and listening to music from NAS/internet radio.

Have dabbled with Tidal and Qobuz but never wanted to go further than a trial.

Thanks. I believe that it must be some conflict between Naim app and this particular Samsung device - though I don’t know if its just mine or the general Samsung model. If the latter it would be bad as there are not many current 10" tablets with Android 10, so I suppose it’s a frequent choice.
(In the Google Play app store, there are lots of feedbacks about what seems similar unresponsiveness)

The network is fine and simple, no other app has an issue on the Samsung (incl. e.g. the BlueSound that is very similar to what the Naim app does, nor Roon), and the Naim app has no issue on my phone …

Me too ! Each time I start or come back to the Naim app, it is blocked for a while.

On my high-end phone (redmi note 7, quite a quick CPU) it comes back after a number of seconds. The wait is long enough to be annoying.

On my Samsung tablet (slower cpu, less memory) the wait is longer, and often there’s a system message stating that the Naim app is not responding. When I click that away, the app resumes.

It looks like the app goes in to some preparation work each time it is readied by Android. That work seems to use quite a lot of resources, and seems to render the app non responsive to user interactions well as OS interactions.

Tidal shows MQA versions but doesn’t show which is which. For example Sarah Jaroscz - World on the Ground. I “favourited” each version and cross-referenced it with Roon so I could see that one was CD and the other MQA.

Good lord, it must be shockingly bad on Android if you think an iPad is better! iPad user here and the performance is woeful. Since having the screen replaced on the NDS, I actually use the remote, the Naim app is that bad.

Interesting, maybe it is inconsistent on the iPad as well. Whenever I posted about the unresponsiveness on my Samsung, an iOS user showed up to tell me that none of this occurs on the iPad

(And surely it cannot always or even very often behave like it does for me - I cannot imagine that anyone at Naim installs it on Android, sees the behavior I am seeing, and thinks “this is fine”)

I have to ask what do we expect the app to do. Maybe those that think its bad should list what it doesn’t do & what they expected it to do.
I use iOS on an iPad 9.7, all I can say is it works, it browses, finds & plays NAS, web services & iRadio, and it links with System Automation & does all that is supposed to do.

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I think we can agree that it should let us use the features it does have without being ridiculously unresponsive. Obviously it does for some/many/most, but obviously not for others

Exactly the same experience here on a variety of Android devices

Do you have Qobuz or Tidal and can you log out to see if it makes a difference?

Two more things:

  • Should have the Rovi stuff in Android as well, not just iOs
  • On Android there is an issue where it shows Qobuz albums duplicated, but Naim is aware and apparently working on it, I was told by support
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You need to sort your network out, because that is for sure what is causing your problem.

I don’t know about Android but the IOS app is always highly responsive on iPhone and iPad for me.

Best

David

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No it is not for sure. There is absolutely no problem in my network

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Good. Can you tell models and Android version? Thanks

My main problem at this time, is that my list of album favourites in the Naim app, does NOT contain ALL of my Qobuz albums !

I moved some album favourites (manually) to the track favourites, and 'additinal" albums appeared in the album favourites list, but not all. So there seems to be some limit to the number of entries in the list of album favorites. The missing albums are those first selected into my Qobuz album list.

As the Qobuz album list can only be displayed in the reverse order the album were added, it is a tedious process to get to those albums. To add insult to injury: if you click on the “wrong” album, and go back to the list of Qobuz albums, that is again at top of list… You need to scroll through the (long!) list again. If, like me, you have multiple albums of the same performer added sequentially, it can literally take minutes to find the track you want if you’re not sure on which album it resides.

And yes, you can filter the list of Qobuz albums for the performer. But that selection process takes as long as scrolling through the list. It can take up to a minute on my tablet. And when you return from looking at the track list of an album, the selection needs to run again.

To conclude, I cannot use favourites to access my oldest Qobuz records, and the acces via Qobuz on the Naim app is not practical.

Search in Qobuz app first. Then play in the Naim app? Not very appealing either!