Rumors have been swirling for some time now about Google’s new and revamped streaming music service, Google Play Music Key, which is expected to be released in the upcoming weeks. Google wants to step up its streaming music service so they can cash in on a U.S. music market worth $7 billion and growing.
According to Reuters, Google’s revamped service will incorporate Songza technology, which Google recently acquired, for help with recommending music. Google launched its initial streaming music service 16 months ago but has so far failed to meet expectations. According to one research firm, Google ranks noticeably behind Spotify and between Rhapsody and Deezer in total users. By recent count, Spotify has over 10 million subscribers.
Competition is only getting tougher. Apple has added a Beats subscription streaming service and is offering free iTunes radio. Amazon launched its music service in June, providing streaming of a limited catalog of music to members of its paid Prime service.
But what can Google do to specifically stand out from Apple, Amazon or Spotify? According to Google, they have no interest in cutting their $10 monthly subscription price.
“Is the bigger upside getting more people to try these services, or is the bigger upside dropping the price by a dollar or two? Right now we’re focused on creating broad awareness that the service exists.” – Jamie Rosenberg, Google’s Vice President of Digital Content
But Google does plan to attack customers with their service becoming an integral part of their wearable device and car. They also want to continue promoting their Songza technology which Google hopes is intelligent enough to play “the right music for the right moment” according to Rosenberg.
In the last month, Google has made a number of small changes:
- Shazam users can now stream or buy songs directly from Google Play
- Brought back public playlists through All Access.
- Expanded their partnership with Samsung to offer Google Play Music free of charge to Samsung users for an extended period of time in a number of different countries.