Google is planning to introduce a new subscription-based streaming music service to compete with Spotify and other similar services. The feature will be integrated into Google Play and could be introduced as early as this morning at Google I/O, Google’s annual developer-centric conference.
The service has been in development for some time now, and when launched will put Google at an advantage over competitors like Apple and Amazon, who have yet to launch an integrated streaming music service to their platform. And with the lackluster sales the Play Music Store has accrued, this could be the jump-start to help them catch up with iTunes, the largest retailer of music in the United States.
One of our top music streaming apps, Spotify, released an update today that adds some very useful new features and fixes some others that make the app much more user friendly. Headlining the changes is the ability to filter and sort playlists and tracks. This will help users find just the tune they are looking for that much faster. Spotify also fixed a couple features related to your listening history. First, when returning to the playlist view the app will take you back to the same position you were in when you left that view. Second, if you leave the app entirely, when you log back in you will go right back to what you were listening to. Spotify also addressed an issue with special characters in usernames. As for the trousers option, that is a fictitious addition in this version which states the “app looks great in trousers.”
If you want to try out Spotify, hit one of the download links below. Just note that while the app is free, full functionality requires a Spotify Premium subscription.
Google Play Download Link
doubleTwist released a new version of their Android app today that adds a streaming music service named Magic Radio. The new v2.0.0 adds a personalized, streaming music service with access to over 13 million songs. According to doubleTwist, the doubleTwist Player app will examine your music library to create new, infinite playlists from the streaming service. Users can also create their own streaming playlist based on songs in their library or from scratch. Magic Radio is a $3.99 per month service that does not use ads so you can enjoy your music uninterrupted. However, in adding the new Magic Radio service to the app, it appears doubleTwist has removed the Internet Radio feature judging by reviews left in the Google Play Store. If that was an option you enjoyed and used, you may want to hold off on updating until we see whether doubleTwist has a change of heart and adds it back in.
Streaming radio app Slacker Radio has released a major update taking them up to version 4.0. No details are provided regarding any under the hood improvements, but the user interface has received a major overhaul. Incorporating elements of the Holo design guidelines, the new interface utilizes a blue and white theme that matches up with an overhaul of their web site.
As if creating the most popular and arguably the best sounding personal audio equipment wasn’t good enough, Beats Audio co-founder Jimmy Lovine revealed to Bloomberg Businessweek that the company is looking to attack the streaming music market next. Lovine told BB that “subscription music online is culturally inadequate” and “it’s not satisfying right now.” He feels that a new streaming service done in the proper manner could provide something far beyond the downloading experience that iTunes currently provides. Make no mistake, he is not looking to compete with Apple and even says the company’s music service is “very, very good.” Lovine merely wants to create a streaming service that attracts hundreds of millions of subscribers, making the business model more viable and more successful than the services we currently have available.
As it stands right now, Lovine isn’t saying what will be different with this theoretical service but something must be in the works as he tells BB, “I can’t show the magic trick, but right now the services are utilities. We only see things in a complete thought.” As far as the previous rumor of a MOG buyout goes, we have heard stories that the deal is complete but we have yet to hear any confirmation from either company. Who knows, maybe HTC’s next flagship phone will not only have Beats Audio integration, it could have some sort of Beats streaming music player as well.
source: Bloomberg Businessweek
If you are a big music fan, you might want to look at MetroPCS. They are offering a new plan called Rhapsody Unlimited Music for Android phones which features unlimited talk, text, web, multimedia streaming and downloading access, and of course, music. You will have access to the 12 million songs that are in the Rhapsody library which you can stream or download for listening without a connection.
All of this will cost $60 per month which is not bad, but with $50 to $55 unlimited plans offered elsewhere, the Rhapsody part of the equation does not feel like that much of a bonus. It’s is not a bad deal if you happen to be a fan of Rhapsody.
mSpot has updated their Android app to version 126.96.36.199158, which brings the new ‘Radio Spotter’ beta music functionailty, allowing you to match songs in your device to similar music, something like Pandora or last.fm does. This is a little more tuned to your Android device through the mSpot App, which is free by the way. You get 5GB of online storage for Free, and are welcome to upgrade to 40GB for $3.99 per month for larger collections.
The mSpot app will provide you internet radio stations, streaming capabilities for all your devices including android, web-based TV, computers and tablets. You can choose to stream music, save it to storage, or even cache music in case you’re on the go where you may not have network connectivity. Lyrics databases are available to make sure you sing along correctly, equalizer and lock screen widget as well, making this a pretty sweet offering for a free cloud streaming app.
Press Release and video walkthrough below.
If you check out the Pushlife site right now, you’ll come across a blank space. The Toronto-based company, Pushlife, Inc. earlier posted that they “are pleased to announce that we’ve been aquired by Google”. The company that was founded in 2008, was purchased for $25 million by Google. Pushlife was an app that would enable your Android phone to play, share, organize, and buy music easily. This information just adds more to what we’ve been seeing and hearing with leaks and rumors of Google streaming service.
Hit the break…..
About a month ago, we saw that there were some additional URLs in the Android Market which pointed to a service we know as Google Music (name may change at launch). We also heard about the Music Sync feature in Android 3.0 which a user was able to successfully turn on and begin syncing his music to some Google cloud server that isn’t supposed to exist yet.
All of this is pointing to the Google Music service starting up very soon, as we know have news from Cnet that states Google has already started testing this service with its staff. the service will supposedly allow a Google Music subscriber to sync their library to a Google cloud server for streaming to any Android device or computer. You’ll also be able to buy online music as well, and have it stored in the cloud. If you don’t feel like waiting, you could probably get it going now by trying the hacks at this XDA thread.
[via mobileattack, cnet]
esDot Development studio, makers of the Adobe air application SkyTunes, has formally announced the app in a press release issued yesterday. SkyTunes allow you to stream your entire music collection from your desktop computer to your Android phone, so you can take your music with you wherever you go without taking up all of your phone’s storage.
The app actually comes in two parts, a Server and a Client. To use SkyTunes, you must install the Server client on your desktop computer to be able to stream your music library. The client app is what you install on your phone, which is what you use to access the music you are streaming.
It requires you to open up a port on your router if you’re behind a firewall, but otherwise it’s pretty easy to set up and works quite well.
Continue after the break for the full press release.