updated 08:55 pm EDT, Fri April 8, 2011
Google buys PushLife for media syncing
Google on Friday quietly bought out PushLife in what could be major help to its Google Music initiative. The deal, estimated to be worth $25 million, gets a company whose self-titled service let non-iOS smartphones get access to iTunes collections and other to streamline getting to Windows Media Player. Users can not just play but manage the collection remotely, making playlists or buying new music, PushLife mentioend.
The Toronto-based acquisition target only provided a small amount of detail on plans but said it would work with Google's Canadian offices to build "better mobile applications for all users." PushLife in its current form would eventually phase out.
Most of Google's buyouts relating to its cloud media strategy have focused on the remote side, but it marked out some of its plans early when it bought Simplify Media in the spring last year. Google Music is expected to have a mix of downloading and streaming that would let users either keep local copies on a device or else pipe it over a connection with some offline caching. A cloud locker has repeatedly been mentioned as part of the plans and might let users store their own copies in the cloud, although labels may have stymied plans by trying to charge for a second use.
Any plans are in a race against time. Amazon beat both companies to a basic service with its Cloud Drive and Cloud Player, but a more substantial service may come from Apple with iOS 5 and a major upgrade to iTunes and MobileMe. Extensions are known to be tied into Apple's new North Carolina datacenter and could give users access to their iTunes collections from any iOS device or computer. It may include rights to look at a local collection and might be open to photos and videos. [via StartupNorth]