Google Music Beta Like Pandora for Your Collection

By: Chris Crum - May 10, 2011

Google just announced Google Music beta at Google I/O. A Google Music service has been long-anticipated, but now it’s finally come, though it may not be exactly what you were expecting.

As you may know, Google has had some licensing issues with record labels, which is why this service is more about the music you already own. In fact, it’s billed as “a better way to play your music.”

With Google Music beta, you can upload your personal music and sync it to listen from the web or from any enabled device with the Music app (which is available in the Android market). Songs that you’ve recently played will even be available when you’re offline, thanks to Google’s caching.

“Once your music is online, it’s always available. Playlists are automatically kept in sync, and you don’t have to worry about cables, file transfers, or running out of storage space,” Google says. “Upload your personal music collection to a single library, even if it’s scattered across multiple computers. You can upload music files from any folder or add your iTunes library and all of your playlists. And when you add new music to your computer, it can be automatically added to your music collection online.”

Google Music Beta

Perhaps the most interesting part of Google Music is that is uses machine learning to create playlists based on songs you enter. You now how Pandora works? It’s similar to this from the sounds of it, but it draws from songs from your own collection. This is the “instant mix” feature.

“All the playlists you create and all the changes you make to them are automatically available everywhere your music is,” says Google.

Google is rolling out Music beta in stages, and says it’s free “at least while it’s in beta”. It is only available on an invitation basis, however. You can request an invite here.

We can only assume Google will continue to try and get deals in place to expand this into music sales as well to directly take on Amazon and Apple.

Chris Crum

About the Author

Chris CrumChris Crum has been a part of the WebProNews team and the iEntry Network of B2B Publications since 2003. Follow Chris on Twitter, on StumbleUpon, on Pinterest and/or on Google: +Chris Crum.

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  • Arty

    I wonder if the “instant mix” is as elaborate as pandora’s song selection process (each song is given a list of characteristics by a human) or if it just selects by the genre tagged within the mp3s’ metadata.

    • Chris Crum

      It would definitely be interesting to know more about this. I’d be very interested to see how well it constructs these playlists. I’m not entirely sure I would want Google to do this for me. I like making playlists myself personally. It’s one thing with Pandora, as it may expose you to some music you’re not familiar with, or at least don’t own. If I’m just listening to stuff I already own, I’ll ordinarily want to create my own playlists, unless I just want to listen on random. Maybe that’s just me.

      • Arty

        Another thing I’m curious about is the details in regard to the cloud. Is it free (doubtful) and how much storage do you get? Based on the website, it looks like the beta is free for a limited time, so there’s that. I’m a make-my-own playlist kinda guy as well, so the option to make a playlist on one computer and automatically access it on another computer (or device) has potential. I put in my request, so we shall see.

  • March

    It failed from the start. I bet it will be retired in a year or so. Story of Google’s life.