By Ryan Bradley, senior editor
FORTUNE -- After months of buildup, on Wednesday Google announced a new, subscription-based streaming music service called Google Play Music All Access. The name may be clunky, but the offerings appear bountiful.
Google (GOOG) secured deals with three of the four major record labels—Universal Music, Sony, and Warner Music Group. Fortune reported in March on the Warner deal, and the plans from YouTube to launch a similar streaming service. Google Play Music All Access is, as its name suggests, built atop Google Play for Android, which previously existed as a digital locker for music. All Access merges users' current Play collections with access to millions of additional songs, for $9.99 a month.
Google is offering a 30-day free trial and, in a bid to reward early adopters, if you sign up by June 30th, after the trial ends, All Access will cost $7.99 a month.
While Google's service seems a direct shot at other subscription-based streaming music providers, like Spotify and Rdio, it is also a direct shot at Apple (AAPL), which has long been rumored to be planning a streaming service on its iTunes store. That Google managed to ink deals with the major labels -- companies that Apple has had a long relationship with -- and launch before Apple was clearly a point of pride at the company's Mountain View headquarters, where the company announced the service at Google I/O, its developer's conference. Google called it "radio without rules" and "your personal library, blended with ours" and repeatedly touted the power of "Google powered recommendations" behind a music discovery engine.
Google Play Music All Access launches Wednesday. (You can sign up here.) What will be fascinating to watch, in the coming months, is not just how Google's competitors respond, but what YouTube offers in music. After all, YouTube is currently the biggest music site on the Internet, and it gives its content away for free. When so much music is so readily available for free, what is it that makes people willing to pay for a service such as All Access?
So-called recommendation engines still have a long way to go.
By Daniel Roberts, writer-reporter
FORTUNE -- As you grow older and busier, it becomes more difficult to make spontaneous discoveries. Or at least that's the theory behind a bevy of so-called predictive apps purporting to know each user well enough to hand them their next favorite song, restaurant, or magazine article.
I gave these tools a test run on a recent trip MOREApr 2, 2013 6:54 AM ET
Exclusive: Google is planning to roll out a music streaming service to capitalize on the power of YouTube.
By Ryan Bradley and Jessi Hempel
FORTUNE -- YouTube, the world's largest digital repository of streaming media, will launch a subscription music service later this year. The service has its own negotiating team and operating unit but will likely have some overlap with new features also rumored to be coming to Google's Android MOREMar 5, 2013 10:35 AM ET
Also: Spotify hits user base all-time high, and Google launches Snapseed.
Tim Cook's freshman year: The Apple CEO speaks [BLOOMBERG BUSINESSWEEK]
In the past few weeks you replaced two members of your senior executive team, mobile software head Scott Forstall and retail chief John Browett. How did those moves make Apple better, which is a polite way of saying, what was wrong?
The key in the change that you're referencing is my deep belief that collaboration is MOREJP Mangalindan, Writer - Dec 6, 2012 2:17 PM ET
Also: Why Apple and HTC settled their patent fight; YouTube readies another round of convent investment.
Why Apple and HTC settled their patent litigation [THE VERGE]
Apple's victory over Samsung is much less a predictor of future succes than you might think. Apple had essentially a perfect storm of facts in the Samsung case: the large number of Samsung devices that look exactly like Apple devices, the internal Samsung evidence showing the MOREJP Mangalindan, Writer - Nov 12, 2012 5:30 AM ET
You probably haven't heard of it, but Echo Nest powers products from the likes of Spotify, Vevo, and MTV.
By Rob Walker, contributor
FORTUNE -- It began with an argument. Tristan Jehan and Brian Whitman met as Ph.D. candidates at MIT's Media Lab. Both were amateur musicians passionate about the ways technology might recommend songs based on a listener's tastes. Both were convinced that "collaborative filtering," a trendy means of achieving MOREOct 18, 2012 5:00 AM ET
Also: Zuckerberg visits Russia, Paul Allen weighs in on Windows 8, and Sean Parker talks Airtime.
Facebook sells more access to its members [THE WALL STREET JOURNAL]
To amp up the effectiveness of its ads, Facebook in recent months has begun allowing marketers to target ads at users based on the email address and phone number they list on their profiles, or based on their surfing habits on other sites.
It has also MOREJP Mangalindan, Writer - Oct 2, 2012 1:45 PM ET
How Katy Perry inspired LinkedIn's redesign; Facebook's real mobile problem.
The royal Nokia screw-up that shouldn't have been [PANDODAILY]
That gets to the larger problem: The entire phone isn't ready. On stage, Nokia had nothing specific to say about when the Lumia would go on sale. A day later, perhaps after noticing that providing a launch date for its make-or-break phone could be somewhat important to the future of its entire business, the MOREJP Mangalindan, Writer - Sep 10, 2012 6:00 AM ET
LCD TV shipments fall for the first time; Microsoft kept its Surface tablet under wraps, even from PC partners.
NPD: Global LCD TV shipments fall for first time [THE WALL STREET JOURNAL]
Global television shipments fell 8% in the first quarter from a year earlier, as LCD-TV volume posted its first year-over-year drop, according to research firm NPD Group. LCD TV shipments fell 3% to 43.1 million units from a year earlier and MOREJP Mangalindan, Writer - Jun 20, 2012 12:16 PM ET
Fortune's curated selection of tech stories from the last 24 hours. Sign up to get the round-up delivered to you each and every day.
* Google (GOOG) is seeking partnerships with automakers to eventually bring its self-driving car technology to real-world drivers. Though, the company still needs to conduct "millions of miles" of testing, and it may take another decade to bring to market. (The Wall Street Journal)
* One good thing to come out of MOREJP Mangalindan, Writer - Apr 26, 2012 3:30 AM ET
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