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Google launches Google Play ‘All Access’ music streaming service

Google has launched its Google Play 'All Access' music service, the company's answer to Spotify and other streaming services such as Sony's Music Unlimited.

In an attempt to lure users away from Spotify, those who sign up to the All Access service before 15 August will be able to get a subscription for £7.99 a month instead of the standard £9.99 - the same cost as Spotify Unlimited.

Google is not however offering a free advert subsidised option, or an equivalent to Spotify's £4.99 a month PC and laptop only subscription.

A key function of the Google Play music service, which is available for free, is access to the Google cloud. This allows users to upload up to 20,000 songs, making the music accessible through any device without the need for syncing.

Unlike Spotify, and in keeping with Google's other cloud based services such as docs, Play Music is accessed through a web app rather than a downloadable application.

"With today's launch, Google Play moves one step closer to your ultimate digital entertainment destination, where you can find, enjoy and share your favourite apps, games, books, movies, magazines, TV shows and music on your Android phone or tablet," said Paul Joyce, product manager for Google Play Music.

Following the success of Spotify, which now has around 10 million users, a number of big and small Internet and entertainment firms have scrambled to launch rival services.

The music streaming industry, particularly Spotify, which remains the market leader in Europe and the US, has been attacked numerous times over the relatively small amounts paid to artists per stream.

Google has also faced heavy criticism by the the music industry in the past for not acting fast enough in removing links to illegal music downloads from its search rankings.