SOFTWARE HOUSE Microsoft is offering users a free route into its Xbox Music streaming service for the web.
People that do not use Windows 8, and we are assured that there are a few, will be able to use Microsoft's version of a music service like Spotify for free through a web browser.
"Today is a big day for Xbox Music: we're releasing on iOS and Android and we're also adding free streaming to our web player, making Xbox Music and its 30 million tracks available on millions more devices and for free to anyone with a web browser," said the firm in a blog post.
"Xbox Music is coming up on its one-year anniversary and we've learned a lot in that time. Xbox Music is now, more than ever, a service that spans across all kinds of devices - phones, tablets, PCs and TVs - and unites artists with their fans through one common platform."
There is a shedload of marketing chat in the blog, where we are advised that Microsoft is just like us and gets frustrated with using any number of musice streaming services.
We learn then that Xbox Music is a one stop shop that pulls ears out of the rival services. It is not free though, and unless you are firmly in the Microsoft camp you are going to have to pay for the Xbox Music service.
"You're listening to Pandora and bookmark a song you love. Later, you open Spotify and use your subscription to listen to the song over and over again on repeat. And then you use iTunes or Amazon to purchase the song for your own collection that wasn't available for streaming. We've all been there," said Xbox Music GM Jerry Johnson.
"As a fan of music, I don't think enjoying the songs I love should be this complicated or disconnected. To solve this problem, last year my team introduced Xbox Music, an all-in-one music service that gives you the independence to stream music for free, subscribe to all the music you want or download to own your favorite songs. And it's all integrated across your tablet, PC, phone and TV."
Android and iOS users will get access to only an online music library, but Microsoft said that an offline feature will follow. The mobile apps require a subscription for an Xbox Music Pass, but free ad-supported streaming can be found on the web and on Windows 8 and later. Microsoft said it has 30 million tunes in its catalogue. µ
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