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ECT News Community   »   LinuxInsider Talkback   »   Re: Google's All Access Music Service Starts on the Right Note

Re: Google's All Access Music Service Starts on the Right Note
Posted by KS2Problema on 2013-05-29 18:25:48
In reply to Patrick Nelson
I was a little taken aback by the title, but I was happy to see a well balanced take up the ups and downs of Google's new service.

As a long time fan of on-demand streaming music subscription (since 2004), and having used a number of services over the years, and being a musician, I was eager to see how Google's entry into the field would hit the ground.

Sadly, I can't say it hit the ground running. To be literal, it was broken when I first signed up and only became functional later in the day. If you're charitable with your definition of functional, anyhow.

The three primary things an experienced consumer looks for in a streaming service are: selection, audio quality, and the user interface.

(An added consideration these days is social media integration, which can be both fun and a source of robo-recommendations based on what friends are listening to on their own streaming service.)

First off, and, perhaps, foremost, the selection on roll out was shockingly anemic.

Ever heard of the Rolling Stones? The aforementioned MOG has about 70 albums (some dupes, different masterings, etc) from the Stones. Google All Access listed 10.

Other artists were similarly sketchy -- when I could find them at all.

The user interface was primitive and a bit clunky (as we may have come to expect from Google's online efforts) but worked well enough.

With regard to fidelity of the streams, well, honestly, the selection was so bad I didn't even bother comparing them with, say, MOG, the service I currently use. The Google streams sounded OK but I did not get the impression they were streaming all 'hi fi' streams like MOG. But the Google audio quality didn't strike me as awful. Just irrelevant in the face of the selection issue.

With regard to stream quality, Spotify hit the US promising to try to get all 320's but apparently they have given up on that effort and now stream 'whatever the labels send us.' Some premium subscribers have complained. Rdio, as I recall uses all 256 kbps streams, which is what most purchased downloads are from places like iTunes and Amazon. Not sure what Rhapsody uses now, but they used to be on the lo fi-ish side.

I'm not aware of any US based streaming subscription companies sending out all 320s besides MOG. Something to watch out for, though, is that MOG's new owners, Beats, are supposedly planning a new, 'curated' streaming service. How that will affect MOG, if at all, remains to be seen.

 * Topic  Author  Date
Re: Google's All Access Music Service Starts on the Right Note  Patrick Nelson  2013-05-24 12:06:59
Re: Google's All Access Music Service Starts on the Right Note  KS2Problema  2013-05-29 18:25:48
Re: Google's All Access Music Service Starts on the Right Note  blue_bullet  2013-05-24 12:15:19
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