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Google Music Beta now Official, Takes on Amazon in Cloud Player wars

The cloud music player war is on!

As hinted on in our earlier post, Google has officially announced Music Beta, their online music streaming service that goes head-to-head with Amazon’s Cloud Player.

Quick facts:

  • Music Beta supports up to 20,000 songs, while Amazon’s free storage (5GB) can only accommodate roughly 1,200 songs
  • Google is providing a music manager app aptly named – what else – Google Music Manager to help users easily upload songs to the Music Beta. This isn’t openly available to the public. Only those with access to Music Beta can download it from the site. There’s a version for Windows and, yes, even Mac OS X.
  • Real-time syncing across devices
  • Recently played songs will be cached for offline listening
  • Just like Gmail, Music Beta is free and initially available only by invitation, but…get ready for this…for US residents only (boo!). If you can find a workaround for this, you can try scoring an invite here.
  • Available to Android 2.2 and newer devices via the updated Google Music app [download here]
  • And if it’s not clear enough, this isn’t an online music store. This is an online storage space for your audio files that also provides streaming services (up to 8 devices max) as well.

Here’s a video overview of Google Music Beta:

Initial impressions? It certainly looks very promising on paper, but the true test really is if they can walk the talk, or in this case, skip to the beat and stream music without a hitch.

For now, since it’s limited to the US only, we can’t do anything but wait. But hopefully, for Google’s sake, the waiting won’t be that long as we hear Apple will be debuting theirs pretty soon.

UPDATE: Engadget’s just posted a pretty comprehensive walkthrough on Google Music Beta. You can check it out here.

Allan David

Allan David

Online, Allan’s got you covered as far as news (and some reviews every now and then) goes. Offline, you’ll see him either sweating it out in the badminton courts or dining out in one of the new restos around town. His favorite noodles: cold soba.

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