On Friday, Google released software on its competitor Apple’s iTunes store that lets anyone access a free Google Play 20,000 song music locker, for free. On top of that, if people choose to subscribe to Google Play Music All Access, this puts over 20 million songs on their iPhones. Keep in mind that Apple still offers no on-demand music subscription.
This also means the cottage industry that had emerged around giving iPhone users access to their Google Play Music accounts has been dealt a serious blow. Google has its own Apple-approved Google Play Music app, and it’s available as a free download for any iOS user.
If you don’t pay Google for anything, you can access 20,000 songs for free on the iPhone, once you’ve uploaded them to your Google Play Music locker. And if you pay Google $10/month for an on-demand music subscription, that’s now on your iPhone too.
Extras include a Listen Now discovery section and the ability to turn any song, album, or artist into an “instant mix,” and the ability to build playlists on the iOS app. If you subscribe for $10/month, those stations will include all the music available on Google’s on-demand service; otherwise, it just plays stations from your locker (20,000 songs for free, and you can’t pay to add more of your own songs, other than as part of the All Access subscription).
Of course, the free Google Play Music iOS app also lets you cache songs to local iPhone memory, as you can with GMusic, because in these times of limited data plans, it’s nice to be able to “gas up” your phone with a selection of tunes while connected to WiFi, so you can bring the songs on drives and subway rides without worrying about accessing your data plan or exceeding its limit.
After playing around with Google’s new iOS music app, we’re impressed by its design and usability of the app, so the questions are:
- Are you ready to put your music in the cloud;
- Do you want to pick Google out of the available options; and
- Is 20,000 songs enough, or do you want to pay $10/month for more music from Google? Even if the former is true but not the latter, it probably couldn’t hurt to install Google Play Music on your iPhone if only for access to your 20,000 uploaded songs, because it’s free, and there’s nothing stopping you from getting some of your other music elsewhere anyway.