Google is to unveil the internet giant’s online music service tomorrow at the Google I/O conference according to recent reports.
The Wall Street Journal first broke news of the launch of a service which is expected to be similar to that launched by Amazon.com and similarly looks set to launch without licenses from the major record labels.
Record labels had previously expressed dismay at the Amazon service, claiming that licenses were needed for music uploaded by users of the service. A point Amazon denies. Apple is said to also be looking to launch just such a service and has signed up at least two of the major labels with the rest expected to ink a deal and launch the service in the coming months.
The issue of music licenses is two-fold with the labels demanding that fees be paid for music uploaded to the cloud offerings by users, regardless of whether they bought the music originally, while the other licence issue relates to being able to sell music.
Amazon and Apple already have covered with popular music retail businesses but Google’s failure to agree terms means Google Music will not be connected to an online store which will allow people to buy music directly.
Google’s Android content strategy boss Jamie Rosenberg told All Things Digital that two of the major labels weren’t playing ball and were "more interested in an unreasonable and unsustainable set of business terms."
Cloud storage functionality like the Amazon Cloud offering is also likely to be included in the Google launch, the Journal said while All Things Digital says the space to be offered will hold around 20,000 songs which could be as much as 50GB.
The service will launch in a US-only invite based beta before launching more broadly in the US in the coming weeks.
"I think we’re honestly going to learn from the beta experience, and think about opportunities for the long-term model," said Rosenberg.