Google music service expected to launch with Honeycomb and Xoom

Google logoGoogle may finally launch its long-rumored music service side-by-side with Honeycomb, Motorola Mobility CEO Sanjay Jha has hinted. Jha was speaking at the Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona when he said that Android would be getting a music service sooner than later, and that it would likely launch on the upcoming Motorola Xoom tablet.

"If you look at Google Mobile services today, there's a video service, there's a music service," Jha was quoted saying in The Guardian. "That is, there will be a music service." Later on, Jha spoke about the Xoom—which will be the first to launch with the tablet-friendly Android 3.0 (Honeycomb)—and added that the OS "adds video services and music services."

Rumors about Google's music service go back to last year. The service has long been expected to be heavily based on streaming music from the cloud—liberating users from the typical computer-syncing model that iTunes users have come to know and loathe. More recent rumors, however, have pinned Google's offering as a combination of digital track downloads plus a "digital locker" streaming service.

Insiders said in September that Google was hoping to offer the streaming service to user for $25 per year, which would give them online access to their music library via desktops and mobile devices. Users would also be able to create playlists to share with others—friends would be able to listen to each track all the way through one time, then would be limited to 30-second previews after that until they buy the song(s) themselves.

Apple has also been rumored to be working on a streaming version of iTunes that would allow users to access their libraries on the go without syncing. The latest on that came just three days ago, when the WSJ suggested that a revamp of Apple's MobileMe service might act as a digital locker for Apple's streaming music service. Apple has allegedly been working on such a service since 2009 when the company bought Lala, but licensing talks have been cited as the reason why it has yet to launch.

Apple's streaming offering is expected to arrive this summer, presumably alongside new and updated iPhones, which would put it behind Google. February 24 remains the rumored launch date for the Xoom, though neither Motorola nor Google have confirmed a solid date.

Source: Ars Technica

Tags: Google, Google+

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