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I have poked around (and prodded) the three-dots menus in the new Google Play Music UI (app version 5.x) and, for the sake of all that is free storage space, it appears to only allow managing on-device/offline tracks on a group basis, e.g. by album. Not only can I not figure out how to pin only specific, individual tracks to my Nexus 4 (without resorting to hacks like pinning a playlist and managing it that way), but I also cannot find a way to remove a single track that has pinned itself to my device without waiting for the entire album to download just so I can unpin it.

Reading the official help page on offline listening was of no help, because I simply cannot find the pin icons described in the article.

Am I just thick? Or did Google decide that storage space on the Nexus 4 isn't scant enough and needs to be filled with even more unwanted music tracks?

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Listen the entire song and the song will be cashed so you can listen to it offline, but be sure that the "cashe during playback" is enabled... And for the removing a single song... try swiping left or right.

p.s. this is the only way other than the path of making a playlist etc...

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Caching during playback does work. However, swiping on the song either in search results or in an album list appears to do nothing. (I tried in "On Device" music, so it should have been removed from the list if deleted.) – dgw May 29 '13 at 17:40
@dgw there is an update for the Google Play Music app, so now you can delete songs directly from the app. – kvizii May 30 '13 at 0:17
Took my device a while to get the update. The "Delete" menu item just moved the track to the Trash. It did what I immediately wanted—removing the track from the phone—but it had a pretty big side effect that could only be counteracted via the Play Music site. – dgw Jun 4 '13 at 9:09

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