Google Music, Google’s answer to online music storage and streaming, is finally an official product after rolling out as a beta service last spring. Similar to Apple’s iCloud, Google Music lets users store their music library online and access songs from their computer and portable media players like the iPhone and iPad, although Google’s offering includes native Android support, too.
A Google blog post stated:
Google Music helps you spend more time listening to your collection and less time managing it. We automatically sync your entire music library — both purchases and uploads — across all your devices so you don’t have to worry about cables, file transfers or running out of storage space. We’ll keep your playlists in tact, too, so your ‘Chill’ playlist is always your ‘Chill’ playlist, whether you’re on your laptop, tablet or phone. You can even select the specific artists, albums and playlists you want to listen to when you’re offline.
Google also launched its own Android Market-based music store for users with over 13 million tracks that users can purchase individually or as albums, also like Apple’s iTunes Store.
Record labels, however, weren’t overly pleased with beta launch of Google Music since the Internet search giant didn’t bother to finalize music deals ahead of time. The labels had pushed for up front licensing fees from Google, and apparently continually raised their asking prices.
Google didn’t help the negotiation process by regularly changing its plans for the service, which forced the labels to restart the deal talks more than once. In the end, it seems Google finally worked out its deals with the labels because it is offering exclusive music from groups like The Rolling Stones, Pearl Jam, and Cold Play.