We cover Google's Android music store event
Google is holding its special "These Go To Eleven" music event in Los Angeles. The company is expected to unveil a music store competitor to iTunes, Amazon MP3, and others, with Google+ song sharing and an Android link as its special features. Check our live coverage page for details as they happen, starting from 5PM Eastern.
Google hints Android music store on November 16
Google gave a strong sign that its long-delayed music store is coming with an invitation sent to the media for a November 16 event. Titled just "These Go To Eleven," the gathering has few clues others than that it will be Android-focused, with those too far to attend in person encouraged to check a live stream at youtube.com/android. The event has an unusual afternoon start at 5PM Eastern and had its invites sent out by "Nigel Tufnel," a reference to Spinal Tap's fictional lead rocker.
BBM Music reaches BlackBerry devices Wednesday
RIM on Wednesday offered its first self-run music option in earnest with a promised launch for BBM Music. The finished version of the cloud music service should reach BlackBerry App World later in the day for Canada and the US. In both countries, it should cost about $5 per month, although RIM is temporarily giving a two-month free trial to help get users onboard.
Google Music store may give hundreds of free songs
Google may have given out its own clues that its own music store is imminent. Trying to visit music.google.com from an Android phone or tablet produces a splash page that, along with promoting the existing cloud storage service, it mentions the option to "shop millions of songs" that would be available directly from Android Market. Giveaways would play a significant role, as there would be "hundreds of free tracks," Google says.
Apple resets iTunes Match ahead of public launch
Apple told developers late Wednesday that it was resetting their iTunes Match accounts for what's likely the last time before the end of October launch. Its need to upgrade the "overall quality and reliability" of the cloud music service would require that the existing accounts be reset on October 27. Those signed up in the beta phase have been told to turn off iTunes Match on all their computers and iOS devices to avoid connection problems during the shutdown.
Google music shop may be days away
A handful of more details about Google's music store may have emerged on Monday. The service is now thought by unofficial WSJ sources to be going live within the next two weeks, and possibly this week. "At least two" major labels are unlikely to have signed on, however, with only EMI probably onboard and Universal in discussions that might not make the release date.
Google Music may go without major labels
Google's tentative music store plans may be launched with just a fraction of the music that Apple and Amazon have, music insiders divulged on Wednesday. In continuing its deadlock with majors, the search firm was reported by CNET as being willing to limit its music catalog to just independent labels. Only "close to a dozen" have signed on, the industry contacts said, and would leave all sides upset at the lost opportunity for sales and recognition.
New iOS app allows Google music streaming
Thanks to the newly-released gMusic: A native Google Music player app ($1.99, iTunes), iOS device owners can stream music from Google Music Beta rather than iTunes Match. Like the official Android app, it lets users access as many as 20,000 songs stored in the streaming music locker. An Offline mode caches store songs locally on the device's memory without having a data connection.
Google Music Beta reaches iPhome, iPad over web
Google's fledgling Music Beta service reached a non-Android mobile platform for the first time Thursday with a web app intended for iOS devices. Visitors can stream any music they've uploaded to the cloud system through Safari, without having to use a native app or Flash. The only known limitation is the expected inability to pin tracks to the device for offline use.
Google Magnifier hopes to spark life in Music Beta
Google sought to bring the limelight back to Music Beta once more late Wednesday with the appearance of its Magnifier blog. The page will highlight artists, ranging from interviews to genre delves and videos of live events. As an incentive to keep visiting, though, it plans to offer free songs every day that will automatically head to a listener's Music Beta cloud for listening elsewhere.
Google lets Music Beta users invite two others
Members of Google's Music Beta service, which launched in May, now have two invites to send out to friends in an attempt to help grow the numbers. The US-only service is free, at least during its beta phase, and lets users upload up to 20,000 songs to the cloud to use as they please. This includes listening from any connected and compatible device, with the ability to 'pin' songs to a smartphone for offline playback.
Android Market hints at Google music store
A redesigned Android Market has hinted that Google's plans for its own music store may still be on the cards. Images for section headers include the expected app and movies sections but also a set of currently unused orange music icons. Android and Me's explorer didn't locate other giveaways, but much of the content from within a given section downloads when the app runs.
Best Buy Music Cloud hits for desk, iOS, Android
Best Buy in an uncharacteristic step jumped into the cloud music space on Wednesday with Best Buy Music Cloud. The service lets users share their iTunes music collections either over the web or through mobile apps, including Android, BlackBerry, and iOS users. Much akin to Amazon Cloud Player or Google Music Beta, listeners have to upload music themselves, although a desktop app will automatically push new iTunes additions to the cloud space.
HP cloud media still a long ways off
HP's cloud media service for the TouchPad is much further away than implied, music industry tipsters claimed this weekend. Marketing material suggested the music and video services would ship with the TouchPad on its now-confirmed July 1 release, but labels said that the talks are in the "early stages." Billboard's insiders said HP hadn't even made clear its objectives and when it wanted the service to go live.
Android users may have reason to worry for iOS 5
The reaction to the launch of iOS 5 outside the Apple loyalist community has been treated with some scorn: not surprisingly, Android fan sites have accused Apple of simply aping what Android had done earlier. While there are some gripes with their own arguments, the real question is whether they understand the difference between having a feature and making it accessible -- and we're not entirely sure they do.
iCloud gets all publishers at last minute
Insiders said late Friday that Apple had managed to secure all its publisher deals just ahead of its iCloud music launch. Having already secured labels, it got the distributors after agreeing to give both major and indie publishers a 12 percent cut, higher than their usual 10 percent. The deal seen by Reuters should clear Apple to show the song-matching music streaming service knowing all its key rights are in place.
Sterne Agee believes iCloud could hurt RIM
Apple's iCloud launch could compound RIM's troubles competing with the BlackBerry, Sterne Agee analyst Shaw Wu said in a research note Friday. The cloud music element of the service could make "collateral damage" by giving iPhone owners access to an always-available music service the BlackBerry didn't necessarily have. As some of the service might be free, it would mimic some of the push mail functionality of a BlackBerry but wouldn't carry the revenue burdens with what RIM offers to carriers, reducing networks' incentives to promote the BlackBerry over an iPhone.
iCloud may cost 150m total as Google Music looms
Apple may be paying significant up-front costs for its recently completed iCloud deal based on possible leaks Friday. Each label is reportedly being paid between $25 million to $50 million to sign on depending the amount of music listeners used on the web. The total mentioned to the New York Post would hover between $100 million to $150 million.
Apple gets last iCloud music deal with Universal
Insiders slipped word Thursday afternoon that Apple had completed the last of the major deals it needed to fully license iCloud. The deal would have all four major labels onboard. At least "some" of their publisher partners have signed on as well, CNET understood.
iCloud should have all deals this week
A follow-up leak Tuesday afternoon backed beliefs that Apple was near wrapping up iCloud music deals. EMI, Sony, and Warner were onboard, but Universal's deal was still on target to wrap up this week, just before iCloud is due to be unveiled at WWDC. The Wall Street Journal source added that the separate publishers also expected their deals to close up at the same time, though these weren't as sure.
iCloud to up quality, Google Music 100m deal leaks
A collection of leaks Thursday night gave added insight into Apple's cloud music plans. Along with backing clues that deals were close, BusinessWeek understood that the song match system wouldn't be too particular and would mirror as much as it could. It would even offer better audio quality if a user's local copy wasn't good enough, three tipsters said.
Apple close on Universal, publishers due soon
More detail slips emerged on Friday that Apple was about to wrap up deals for its cloud music offering. Universal, the last to go through, was "about to sign" its agreement. Publishers were still unsigned, but the AP source said their deals were due to wrap up "soon."
Apple iCloud music publisher talks said procedural
Apple's remaining talks with music publishers for its cloud music should be very straightforward, sources mentioned Friday. Now likely to have secured labels, it was already known to need deals with each label's corresponding publisher but isn't expected to face trouble. The company doesn't have any "theological hurdles" with publishers and hadn't reached a deal only because of who it had to approach first.
Apple has Sony for iCloud, only Universal waiting
Apple's deals for its cloud music service, tentatively part of iCloud, gained momentum overnight after mentions of a third label deal. Following Warner and EMI, Sony has also reportedly signed onboard. Music industry contacts reiterated to Bloomberg that Universal was also close to a deal, though they added that publishers still needed to sign on along with the labels.
Apple gets EMI for cloud music, near done
Music label insiders revealed late Wednesday that Apple had signed on EMI for its cloud music service. The company had already landed Warner for its service, so far known as iCloud, and now had half the major labels it needed. The contacts informed CNET that only Sony and Universal were left and that their deals were close enough that they could be ready by next week.
Music labels explain fallout for Google Music Beta
Music labels are outraged that Google's Music Beta didn't give them what they wanted, insiders detailed Thursday morning. Industry officials are "pissed" Google chose the reduced but legal option instead of paying for licenses. Many labels wanted immediate cash advances, and the prices went up across the board as individual labels hiked their demands and then led to others wanting to match the terms, Hollywood Reporter said.
Music labels hint Apple cloud music tops Google
Music label insiders said Wednesday that they understood Apple's iCloud music to be better than services like Amazon's Cloud Player or Google Music Beta. They claimed that neither of the existing services could have the "same range of options" without saying what those were. In passing information along to CNET, they were worried Amazon and Google would get acceptance and wouldn't upgrade service, hinting that they thought Apple planned to charge for its option.
Google Music Beta and Movies go live
As part of the many launches at Google I/O day one, Google formally launched its first real steps into cloud media delivery. Music Beta lets users upload as many as 20,000 songs in their personal music collections that they can then stream from either a modern web browser or an Android phone or tablet. Offline music still plays a role despite rumors: recent tracks are automatically cached for later, and listeners can "pin" music to a mobile device to have a permanent copy for when an Internet connection isn't available.
Google IO live coverage up as Music Beta ready
Google is kicking off the Google I/O conference with its day one keynote. The company is due to talk about its Music Beta service and may also hint at the finished Chrome OS as well as the future of Android. Check our live coverage page starting from 12PM Eastern for updates as they happen.