Google Music Is Hopeful

Google Appliance as shown at RSA Expo 2008 in ...

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I’m a Spotify user, but I’m very hopeful of Google Music.  How?  Google Music is doing things very different than other online music services at the moment.  Instead of only offering these — promising users to have access to the biggest online music collections, making streaming music easier, storing music in the cloud and allowing music access offline — Google Music goes beyond by allowing users to share songs and helping aspiring musicians to sell their own creations (i.e., songs) to Google Music’s audiences.  Google Music also launches unique music contents to awe Google Music lovers even more.

By thinking sort of out of the box, Google Music might become very formidable!  It might scare other online music services into offering many similar things.  What Google Music lacks is the music itself!  OK, does it sound like I’m going nut by saying that?  It’s well known by now even though there are few major record labels who aren’t yet sleeping in the same bed with Google Music, but it doesn’t mean Google Music is lacking music literally.  In fact, the opposite is true as I have heard that Google Music has just about ten million songs and will add around 5 million more songs to its databases.

Whenever I say Google Music lacks music itself, I mean that Google Music members cannot freely listen to all music within Google Music.  Spotify is the opposite of Google Music, and Spotify can do more by just rolling out similar things that Google Music is currently offering (e.g., helping aspiring musicians to sell music).  Instead of making each user to buy a song for specific price, Spotify allows users to have all you can eat music buffet.  Paying few bucks a month or not, Spotify users can listen to any song within Spotify’s gigantic music collections.  Premium Spotify users can also stream music offline.  So, from Spotify user standpoint, I like what Google Music does for aspiring musicians, but Spotify has more than enough to blow Google Music out of the water in term of the music itself (i.e., all you can eat music buffet style).

What Google Music has over Spotify is that Google Music lovers will own the songs they’ve bought forever.  Spotify should offer a plan where loyal customers who stay with them for certain period more could own specific amount of songs for forever.  As now, I just like the idea of being able to explore and listen to any song I want, whenever I like, and as however much I want to on Spotify without worrying about breaking my bank instantly.  By allowing users to listen to all songs within Spotify’s gigantic music collections, this allows users to be able to explore more music in a way that no other online music services can.  For an example, in certain occasions, I had listened to songs that I hated, but only for the first 30 seconds of these songs, because I got to like the songs eventually when I listened to these songs through and through.  I doubt Google Music’s users can do something like this as they explore for new music. Google Music lovers might have to know what songs they like beforehand before they could open up their digital wallets for buying songs.

I’m not so familiar with Amazon‘s online music offering, but I think their service is similar to Google Music.  I could be wrong about this though!

Apple’s iTunes Match can be used in conjunction with iTunes and Google Music and whatever online music service which Amazon is offering.  What is special about iTunes Match is that users can use many other online music services together with iTunes Match.  Other than that, iTunes Match is pretty much a part of iCloud, but it’s specifically tailored to the music side of iCloud.  In reality, iTunes Match and iTunes itself are not that different than Google Music in a sense that users still have to buy each song somehow.  With that being said, iTunes Match does have one trick which benefits users greatly is that it allows users to have iTunes Match matches whatever songs from local hard drives and stores them on the cloud.  This might encourage users to download free songs elsewhere and let iTunes Match matches songs, thus allowing users to freely own new songs at greater bitrates (i.e., higher quality sounds).

In conclusion, Google Music’s toughest competition is Spotify!  Imagine the scenario of Spotify allows users to own certain songs forever for being loyal customers for certain months more, this could spell disasters for most online music services.  Too bad, such a Spotify scenario could only exist within my imagination.