With the introduction of Google Play Music: All Access, the tech giant hopes to tackle services like Pandora and Spotify head on.
Straight up, I like Google. As much as my anti-establishmentarian streak hates the idea of siding with any corporation, the people behind Gmail and the world's top search engine are generally pretty great. That said, I've also got a raging addiction to Pandora, so today's announcement leaves me a bit torn.
Google, having long ago decided to beat everyone at any tech-related pursuit, just announced a service dubbed "Google Play Music: All Access." Despite its horribly unwieldy title, Google Play Music: All Access is a largely familiar concept: Users will be able to create playlists, share them with friends, discover new artists and songs via automated recommendations, and even use the thing as a makeshift radio by setting it to autoplay tunes that meet whatever discretionary criteria your tastes might warrant. You want nothing but Ke$ha and Maroon 5? Alright, you're terrible, but Google Play Music: All Access can probably accomodate you.
So, what's the caveat here? Glad you/I asked. When Google Play Music: All Access debuts (conviently, today), you'll need to shell out $10 per month to use the service. Those who sign up prior to the end of June will receive a discount, lowering the monthly fee to a mere $8. Either subscription option comes with a free 30-day trial.
Though that price may seem steep to those more accustomed to listening to Pandora free of charge, keep in mind that your monetary outlay prevents the service from forcing you to listen to any ads. Further, thanks to Google's extant music store, the Google Play Music: All Access service should boast a wider variety of music than its competitors. Then again, the world of music licensing is a baffling tangle of legalese and foreboding spider webs, so only time will tell as to how wonderful Google's latest venture may be.