Online Music Is Next Target For Google (GOOG)

Streaming online music is the next target business for Google, according to sources familiar with the company’s plans. A new music streaming service would fit well with Google’s current businesses and advertising plans. Companies are eager to develop services that keep consumers on their computers and mobile devices for as long as possible so that they can be shown targeted ads from companies willing to pay to reach users.

Digital music providers currently offer radio-style programs, downloadable music and personal playlists. There are already a number of popular streaming services available for consumers to choose from, so Google’s new service will have to stand out if it is to have a chance of success. Apple’s music options include its free iTunes radio service and its Beats subscription streaming service. Amazon recently starting providing members of its $99-a-year Prime service with access to an additional music service with a limited catalog of music.

Google also has a $10-a-month All Access subscription-music streaming service launched nearly 16 months ago that will be updated in the coming months to include technology from Songza, a music recommendation service purchased by Google this summer. The current music service has struggled against its competitors and Google has had issues with its efforts to expand its subscriber base. Each month, the service has between 500,000 and a few million users. In comparison, Spotify has more than 10 million paying subscribers.

Google already owns a popular streaming service in YouTube, but in most cases, each music video has to be selected separately, especially if you want to listen to different artists. In the near future, YouTube is planning on revamping the service so that several videos can be played in a row. Google and YouTube both have large active user bases and a music streaming service that is able to take advantage of that while appealing to a wide variety of consumers is almost certain to be successful.

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