After a considerable wait, Google has launched its Play Music service in Canada. Launched in the United States in 2011, Play Music initially allowed users to upload up to 20,000 of their own songs to the cloud for listening through any device.
Later, Google added a music portal for album and song sales through the Play Store. Last summer, during Google I/O, the company added All Access, a streaming music service available on Android, iOS and the web.
Today, after hearing the cries of hundreds of thousands of Canadians clambering for more choice in the digital music space, Google is making all three tenets of Play Music available nationwide. Sporting 25 million tracks, including many Canadian artists that are not available in the United States, Play Music will be offered at an introductory offer of $7.99/month, with a 30-day free trial, until June 30th, after which time it will return to its regular $9.99/month price.
Play Music All Access has evolved tremendously since its launch last summer, and the product we’re getting in Canada is a mature product that goes up against Rdio, Deezer, Slacker Radio and even Songza.
There’s an a la carte element to All Access, allowing users to search for artists or albums and save them to a Library, and even cache them offline, for later perusal. But it also has a heavily-curated Radio portion that uses Google’s search algorithm to determine a user’s most appropriate track list. Radio stations and playlists can even be stored in their entirety for offline listening.
An editorial element also exists, with album reviews and featured artists. Google is even launching an Artist Spotlight element in the next few weeks, allowing independent artists to upload their albums and EPs for more exposure and direct access to royalties.
Google is launching the service with some deals on classic Canadian albums, including Drake’s Nothing Was The Same, Arcade Fire’s Reflektor, Neil Young’s Harvest and Bryan Adams’s Reckless for $1.49.
Play Music is pre-installed on all Android devices, and can be downloaded for iOS from the Apple App Store.