Google just launched an on-demand subscription music service at I/O called “Google Play Music All Access”. Its web and mobile interfaces feature millions of songs you can play instantly, recommendations, charts and playlists, and instant radio stations. The Spotify competitor launches today in the US for $9.99 a month, comes with a free trial month, and sign-ups before June 30th get it for $7.99.
All Access is just one of dozens of announcements Google launched today at its I/O conference in San Francisco. Follow along with our live blog for all the news and our commentary.
Everything from your Google Music locker is automatically pulled into Google Play Music All Access. Beneath the content you own, everything else an artist has ao All Access is automatically listed and plays at a tap. More countries will get Google Play Music All Access soon.
News that the service was coming was leaked yesterday by The Verge after it discovered Google had completed licensing deals with the major record labels. Google launched its music locker service two years ago, and later started selling music files from Play. Now Google Play users have a choice to stream rather than download.
Google’s Chris Yerga explained that with current music services, you might have a huge catalog to choose from, but getting that music organized and playing quickly is too hard. “Why is it that managing my queue feels like a chore? We set up to build a music services that doesn’t just give you access to great music but also guides you through it” said Google’s Chris Yerga.
Overall the app looks slick, with options for instantly queuing up songs. It’s also designed to get music playing as fast possible if you just want your ears filled.
All Access will have a tough road to traction, considering Spotify’s huge head start with 24 million active users and 6 million paying subscribers. However, the fact that All Access is located within the Android-ubiquitous Google Play store means Google could heavily promote it if it wants growth.
The logic behind launching an on-demand music service seems to be that it’s a critical part of any phone. Android is incomplete without it. Google Play Music All Access might never become a market leader, or even make Google much money directly, but it strengthens its presence on mobile. It could get people buying more Android phones, which lead to plenty of other revenue for Google.