Google Play Music streaming service launches in Canada
Published Monday, May 5, 2014 12:50PM EDT
Google launched a new music streaming service available to Canadians on Monday, giving music lovers access to 25 million songs for about $10 per month.
The tech giant's expansion of the Google Play Music streaming service to Canadians comes about a year after the service launched in the U.S., Europe and Mexico.
Google's music collection includes songs by Canadian artists that are not available to Play Music users outside of the country.
"We have had an incredible demand," Google's Director of Global Music Partnerships Zavanah Levine told CTV Toronto's Ashley Rowe.
"Every time we launch Google Play in a new country or we launch a new feature in the United States, we receive a host of comments and emails from Canadians urging us to please come to Canada."
Google Play Music lets subscribers listen to millions of songs by selecting a web stream or tuning in to digital radio channels from their computers, tablets or smartphones for the price of $9.99 per month. Users who sign up before June 30 will only pay $7.99.
Users can create their own ad-free playlists, browse experts' recommendations and search for new favourites by genre or artist. The new program lets users "pin" their favourite albums or songs and listen to them while not connected to the Internet.
Play Music also gives users the option to buy music, which is downloaded permanently, regardless of whether the subscription is terminated.
Google's music streaming service is joining other subscription-based music services like Rdio and Spotify, both of which charge users $9.99 per month.
Tech expert Kris Abel told CTV Toronto that Google's product differs in that it allows subscribers to store up to 20,000 of their own songs in the cloud for free, and listen to their own music alongside Google’s catalogue.
"I think the approach that Google's taking is very good because it allows people to combine both their personal libraries as well as the online service," Abel said.
"Most places don't do that. Everybody has built up this collection of MP3s on their computer. They don't want to just toss that away, they want to combine it with the new service."
To mark the launch, Google is offering deals on classic Canadian albums, including Neil Young's "Harvest," and Bryan Adams' "Reckless," for $1.49.