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Google Play All Access: New music service launched at Google I/O 2013

Confirming the move at its I/O Conference in San Francisco, Google on Wednesday launched a new music service called Google Play All Access.

For $9.99 (£6.57) a month, users of All Access will be able to listen to "millions of tracks" in the Google Play Store in addition to their own personal music libraries, said Google engineering director Chris Yerga.

"We set out to build a music service that doesn't just give you access to great music, but guides you to the music you want to hear. Google Play All Access is a uniquely Google approach to a subscription music service," he said.

All Access features expert-curated playlists that subscribers can access and add to their own libraries or create "radio stations" within Google Play's music service. The idea behind the service was to add a better discovery process for music lovers seeking to find new tracks, Yerga said.

"Anything you see, you can play. You can turn All Access into a radio station and this is radio without rules. It's as lean back as you want or as interactive as you want it to be," he said.

Google made the new service available in the US immediately with All Access set to roll out in other countries in the "coming months," he said.

All Access is the lead pony in a revamp of Google Play's navigation framework that is aimed at improving user discovery of apps, books, movies, magazines, and music. Search remains a big part of that framework— "this is Google, after all," Yerga said—but a new navigation sidebar in the tablet version of the Play Store interface and the Explore feature in All Access are among the UI tweaks Google is making to that end.

Those changes "are going to roll out to all the Play apps, books, movies, magazines, and of course, music," Yerga said.

Google Play All Access will be available for Android-based smartphones and tablets, and there's also a Web browser version for laptops and desktops.