Google Music Set To Ruin Christmas For iTunes?
According to music industry sources Google’s rumoured music service is likely to launch by Christmas this year. Google is apparently in negotiation with several music labels about a download store and cloud-based music storage allowing users to play music on the go.
According to Wired, Google’s vice president of engineering, Andy Rubin, who masterminded the development of the Android mobile OS has been leading the talks with the record labels on the form the proposed Google Music service would take- with a view to having the service running by Christmas.
The music industry is keen for another major mover to enter the digital distribution market as many feel that Apple exerts too much control of the pricing and format of music, and a little competition may help to loosen their grip a little. iTunes downloads at present account for up to 70% of US digital music sales and Google is aiming to take a bite out of this expanding market.
“Finally here’s an entity with the reach, resources and wherewithal to take on iTunes as a formidable competitor by tying it into search and Android mobile platform,” said a label executive anonymously. “What you’ll have is a very powerful player in the market that’s good for the music business.”
The launch of a music service by Google will be good news for Android handset owners too as it’s an area where the platform is lagging behind at present. These same users will form an instant installed user base to give the service a leg-up but the real trick to beating iTunes will be to get the service up and running online in the cloud- giving users access to their library anywhere they have an internet connection.
Many thought that iTunes 10 would herald the beginning of cloud based music rather than simply the addition of a social networking element due to Apple’s purchase of media streaming company, Lala. Google have also purchased a similar company in the form of Simplify Media so it looks like the race is on to be the first one to bring music into the Cloud!
The mobile music battle lines are drawn, we’ll just have to wait and see what Christmas brings for digital music distribution.
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