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Amazon to launch subscription streaming service, Prime Music

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by Barclay Ballard, 12 Jun 2014News
Amazon to launch subscription streaming service, Prime Music

Amazon has joined the likes of Spotify and Deezer by launching its own music streaming service, Prime Music.

The service is currently only available in the US and will launch as part of the Amazon Prime subscription service rather than a standalone product. It is not yet know whether non-Prime subscribers will be able to access the service separately.

Read more: Amazon at your service? Company planning service marketplace later this year

Customers who already pay the annual fee will receive restriction-free listening across iOs, Android, PC, Mac and Kindle Fire devices, without advertisements. Users will also be able to download songs, but will have to contend with a significantly smaller range of tracks than that being offered by Amazon's competitors.

Prime Music currently has over a million songs available compared to Spotify and Deezer, which both claim to have in excess of 30 million tracks. All indications suggest that Amazon are targeting a more mainstream audience of music fans that won't mind the smaller selection. In keeping with this, Buzzfeed claims that the service "will not include recent releases but instead restrict its catalogue to songs and albums that are six months old and older".

Amazon's editorial team will also provide "Prime Playlists" that group songs by genre as well as context,  and also provide a "top songs" guide to artists.

Read more: Twitter eyes up Soundcloud, Pandora and Spotify for potential acquisition

It has also been suggested that Amazon have only been able to negotiate licensing deals with two out of the three major music labels: Sony Music and Warner Music Group, while Universal hold out for better terms. This means that while you may be able to listen to groups such as Led Zeppelin or AC/DC, other major artists like Miley Cyrus and Elton John are not currently available.

It's not clear how much of a setback this will prove, but Amazon have entered an increasingly cluttered marketplace, with the likes of Spotify, Deezer, Sony Music Unlimited and Google All Access already established in this space. 

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