The War of Streaming Has Begun… It’s Google Music All Access v/s Spotify

Google Play Music All AccessRecently, at the Google 2013 I/O held at San Francisco, the internet search giant officially introduced the Google Music All Access, a subscription music service, priced at $9.99 a month. With a large library and competitive price, Google Music All Access comes with a 30-day free trial for users with an offer price of $7.99 for all those who sign up for a free trial before June 30.

Standing on the same lines as Spotify and Rdio, Google Music All Access adds new streaming choices to users, giving access to millions of songs on the Android smartphones, tablets and computers.    

With this official announcement by Google, it looks like the war of music streaming has now begun. Among other competitors, it seems more like an All Access versus Spotify story, which is a five-year-old streaming service. To see which service we like more, let’s consider some of the similarities.

Spotify, currently the leader in the race of music streaming services, has over 24 million users and is available in around 28 countries. Google Music All Access, on the other hand will be launched in the US, before it expands to the UK and rest of the world.

Akin to All Access, this service also comes with a price tag of $9.99, but under different versions. Spotify has a free version with ads, a $4.99 a month version with no ads that plays only on the computer, and the premium $9.99 subscription that’s ad free on computers and smartphones.

However, there’s no free version in Google Music All Access. But just like All Access, Spotify also comes with a 30-day free trial for users.  

To be honest, both the services seem to be as good, both have millions of songs in their library and stand at the same price tag. Aggressively courting new users, both services stand on the similar lines.

With Spotify and All Access, users get strong search functions along with suggestions based on how they rate the tunes. With these, subscribers can also generate radio stations based on their preferences and behavior.

However, considering music selection choices, Spotify already has deals with EMI, Sony Music, Universal and Warner Music among many others. It is also reported that Google also has settled deals with Sony, Universal and Warner to offer their songs. Google says that its service already has millions of songs for subscribers, whereas Spotify also claims to have over 20 million tracks. Considering this arena, both the services have great assets in their respective library.  

Exploring even further, Google Music can be played from an Android smartphone, browser on a PC or Mac. However, for iPhone users, the access is limited to browser as there’s no dedicated app.

Spotify, on the other side, also works in browsers. This service offers a dedicated app on PC, Mac, Windows Phone 8, Android and iOS 6, which gives it a lead on against All Access.  

Considering the music quality, both the services have quality output of 320kbps and also let users use phone’s equalizer to twist settings.

Looking at offline play options, Google Music lets users download up to 20,000 songs, which they can play when offline. This feature works well on the Play Music smartphone app, but gets a little complicated when used on the computer, which we hope gets fixed soon.

On the other side, Spotify subscribers with premium version can download up to 3,333 songs across three registered devices. Both options let users enjoy songs with no need of network quality or mobile data plans.

Lastly, exploring the social network, Google Music All Access lacks social integration as compared to Spotify. With All Access, users can only share an album on Google Plus, but can’t follow friends or see what they’re listening to.

Spotify, on the other hand, works closely with Facebook, where users can follow each other and see what their friends are listening to. With this service, users can also broadcast their current tracks on Facebook.

So which music service do you like more? Does Google Music All Access tempt you enough for a switch from Spotify? Let’s start a discussion. Share your views with us.Read the rest

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