I thought one of the coolest announcements from today’s Google I/O keynote was not Android related at all. It was actually the new cloud based streaming music service, called Music Beta by Google. The new service will be rolling out real soon, with beta sign ups starting now. It looks like Google wants to one-up Amazon’s recently released Cloud Player, and end the dominance of Apple’s iTunes, all with one swift kick in cloud.
Music by Google is basically Google’s take on the “digital music locker,” that we recently saw from Amazon. Except the big difference is 19000 songs. Amazon only offers the user to store 1000 songs where as the new Music by Google will offer a 20000 song capacity. Users can upload their personal music collection to be played from any web connected tablet, computer or Android device.
The big feature that Google is banking on is the ability to listen and stream offline. Yes, I said offline. Google will secure an undisclosed amount of storage on the users device or computer, and store the most recently listened to tracks for use offline and on the go. Users can create a custom playlist or use the “Instant Mix” feature to automatically build new playlists of songs from your collection that go great together.
I’m sure you are wondering how you can signup for the new Music by Google service. There are a few catches as of right now. Currently the Music Beta by Google is only available for U.S. residents, by requested invitation. You must have a active Google account and you will need to head over to music.google.com and request an invitation. All of the Google I/O attendees are automatically in the beta, but the line forms after them, so I would signup as soon as possible.
The beta will be free, but the final service is rumored to have a price tag, but I’m guessing their will be a free package to compete with Amazon. There is also an updated Google Music app available now in the Android Market. Android phones and devices running Android 2.2+ can install the app and be ready for the service once it rolls out.
via Google I/O 2011