According to Google's own people, Google Music - which might be a music download service designed to let users store songs in the cloud at some point - will launch this year. Trouble is, the Google Music project doesn't have any sort of public leader, and Google's now supposedly trying to remedy that problem.
Peter Kafka reported this afternoon, "The search giant is casting about for an executive to run its music service, which doesn't actually exist yet. . . . Industry sources tell me Google has talked to several digital media executives about the job, but has yet to hire anyone."
It would be a little odd if the hiring process doesn't proceed quickly; major excursions into new business segments tend to be led by publicity-seeking VPs, SVPs, or presidents of some sort. And it's not like there should be a shortage of applicants, given that Google's involved.
Whoever's worked on Google Music so far has presumably done an all right job to date, though, and Kafka pointed out that MySpace "built out MySpace Music, then hired president Courtney Holt from MTV after the service had launched."
Plus, there is a significant element of risk involved, given that Apple already dominates the music download industry and has a market cap of $220 billion to Google's $144 billion.
We'll see what happens and be sure to report any updates.