Microsoft launches Xbox Music

Free streaming plus download, and cloud music service coming to Windows 8, Windows Phone 8, and Xbox 360 devices; Windows 7 and Windows Phone 7 unsupported.

Microsoft has unveiled Xbox Music, a streaming, download, and cloud music service with access to around 30 million tracks. Streaming is free thanks to advertising support, while an ad-free version called Xbox Music Pass--which includes unlimited plays, and offline support for PCs and mobile--costs $9.99 (£8.99) per month. The a-la-carte download option offers 256kbps DRM-free MP3s tracks (versus 192kbps WMA for streaming) for purchase from the Xbox Music Store.

Xbox Music allows you to stream and download your favorite songs.

Cloud storage is also promised for later in the year. Similar to Apple's iTunes Match service, Xbox Music will allow you to scan-and-match any music you own and add it to your own personal cloud catalogue for use on all your devices. It includes music acquired through other services, such as iTunes or Amazon.

Xbox Music--which was originally rumored to launch on October 26--is available on Windows 8, Windows Phone 8, and Xbox 360. Notably, Windows Phone 7 and Windows 7 users will not be able to access the service. However, The Verge notes that Zune Music will continue to be supported on those platforms. Microsoft is promising that Xbox Music will made available on other platforms "in the coming year".

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Discussion

91 comments
megakick
megakick

XBOX music is better, streaming is Free with ads.

fekkme
fekkme

microsoft keeps trying, but what it always does is miss the boat and ruin brands.  should have called it hotmailoutlook music and killed it after a year like everything else

mariokart64fan
mariokart64fan

lol i had access to music on my xbox360 since the day it first launched , its called get a cd rip it to the hard drive , and there you go  music  ,  

and you can play it while playing games  , this service is quite useless ! 

Hvac0120
Hvac0120

Well... just checked to see if the Xbox Music app was already available in the Windows Store. The answer is "No." But you can already get the Xbox SmartGlass app. See screenshot image here => http://i.imgur.com/I4LQ1.png 

XspidervenomX
XspidervenomX

I have to run my TV, my XBOX, to listen to a song.. That's like running my car to turn on the bathroom light...oh and thanks for charging me for Gold', then leveling a massive fee to listen to music on top of that.. Thanks for the hate!

jboardman
jboardman

Sounds good, and looking forward to seeing how this works through the Xbox. 

 

But...when did $9.99 = £8.99??

 

Please stop screwing people in the UK for now good reason Microsoft. 

Bangerman15
Bangerman15

will probably try this out on my wp8 when i get it next month and my ms surface tablet ;) w8 isn't even that bad u just gotta get used to the layout, the look and feel when using w8 feels very modern, although i spend my time in the desktop on it for games and what not 

GH05T-666
GH05T-666

Damn you Microsoft why are you going all voice controlled and touch screen on me.. I've been with you so long Microsoft and you screw me like this. I dont care about this operation systems for phones and tablets and touch screen computers. i just want it for a computer.

They are trying to copy Apple in so many ways and it just doesnt suit Microsoft.

 

I wish there was a new gaming operating system out. 

Someone who know how please make one, you will be rich!

Gothmag
Gothmag

I actually got an email today saying my zune music pass just got better. Now it's Xbox Music. They also gave me 1000 points. As far as I can tell it's business as usual for my WP7, so not a big issue. From what I've seen on WP8 it'll be the same as WP7 but a different name... Which works since I'll be getting a new WP in about a month.

DrKill09
DrKill09

Lemme guess, it'll be DRM filled like Zune was, right?

 

(looks lovingly at giant collection of vinyls and cassettes)  F*** DRM.

okassar
okassar

Microsoft will include Xbox Music with all copies of the Windows 8 software. It's going to devour Spotify, Pandora, Last FM, etc... If they have enough fun with it and enough people get hooked (keep in mind that Spotify got a few million users over 4 years, and Xbox Music will probably get somewhere closer to 100 million instantly), they might use that opportunity to launch a new line of music players. I'm glad, because I actually like Zunes and still use one. They'll probably be called something different though, like....Xbox Touch or something.

Shadowdanc3r
Shadowdanc3r

It's good to see these types of services offering kbps downloads higher than 128.

SolidTy
SolidTy

Bye Bye Zune. Hello newest thing Xbox music.

 

 

X-RS
X-RS

See, I loved Zune taking its social approach to music. I'd actually discover other bands, cept once you want to go indie and outside of catalogue/alternative it doesn't really show.

 

SO it sounds like I've got cloud storage. Since there will be obscure music not provided by their service FOR SURE,  I'm still making custom playlists and putting them on rotation. Nobody really wants to offer up part of their precious internet when they're in the heat of battle either. It'd be nice but I don't quite see it being for me.

mike300zxt
mike300zxt

Great!  I may give it a try when they release their iOS app.  I hate iTunes!

ebeorietemethhp
ebeorietemethhp

i think this will be a lot larger than people think, even if it doesnt radically change things. ive always imagined a music streaming service that could integrate with my xbox while i play games, and i hope this could be just that. songs stored in the cloud could be jamming away while i blast fools online. no need for having your mp3s stored onto your harddrive, or having your ipod connected via the 360s usb cable. apps already exist on the xbox. thats what i thought lastfm would be back when it first launched. microsoft is making a big push with their whole windows 8 platform, and where i see this working is, surprisingly, with the paid model on xbox 360s. theyve already got a large subscriber base with xbox live - it would be simplest thing to have those people upgrade over to Xbox Music, especially if they could then, as microsoft says, access their music on other devices, including android and iOS.

firedrakes
firedrakes

um its using the zune theme. icons and such

OneStrong2
OneStrong2

Turn up the music! Turn it up louder....

Vickman178
Vickman178

I remember a day when my video game machine was focused on games... :'(

 

Landsharkk
Landsharkk

MS gives away free music (1 ad every 15 minutes).  MS haters come out and complain about FREE MUSIC.

 

Sounds about right.

 

Me?  I'll be enjoying my FREE MUSIC from Microsoft.  

 

 

How many of you complaining about Xbox Music not coming to Win7 also buy new iPhones whenever they release?  Why did you do that, don't your apps work on your old iphones too?  You complain about Xbox Music not working on your current device and your reluctance to upgrade to a new MS software, but you'll have no problem upgrading to a new iDevice any chance you get.  

 

Want to talk about ironic.  The jump from Windows 7 to Windows 8 is a big step forward in technology, same with Windows Phone 7 to Windows Phone 8.  The MS Surface Tablets are already ahead of every other tablet out there.  

 

What exactly is so very wrong with Windows 8 and the new devices?  

glez13
glez13

This reminds me of Halo 2. "Only for Windows Vista" and the only thing it needed it for was for how a single file loaded.

 

MS likes old tricks.

 

 

gatsbythepig
gatsbythepig

While we're at it, MS can keep Bing too.

Hvac0120
Hvac0120

Strike 1: Only for Xbox 360, Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 devices

Strike 2: Xbox 360 version limited to XBL Gold members

Strike 3: Continuing support for Zune service after launch as a crutch for customers who don't have the hardware or XBL Gold.

 

You're out Xbox Music. Should've supported more customers and stopped with all the confusing name switches every time the service is "upgraded"

Albaficas
Albaficas

fail just fail.....they focus on everything else instead the most important thing...GAMES

just rehashed halo's,gears and flopza just to keep the fangirls shut.

 

glad sony keep making games for their hardcore audience...something m$ forgot it long time ago

Dr_Corndog
Dr_Corndog

No Windows 7? Huh. Guess they're eager to flush their most recent OS down the toilet. Hey, I still use Windows XP.

 

For that matter, I still buy CDs.

Dav_id83
Dav_id83

Sad how theres no Windows 7 support again MS make a stupid decision

plaintomato
plaintomato

Won't support Windows 7? That's almost funny. Almost. Next thing you know my auto dealer is going to tell me they don't service 2012 models anymore.

Hvac0120
Hvac0120

 @GH05T-666 Check out Valve's Steam for TV (may still be in Beta, but all users can participate). Use an Xbox controller with a decent gaming PC connected to your TV and run the Steam client in TV mode. It's not an operating system as it runs on Windows (Linux soon), but it feels sort of like an Operating System of its own when running on a TV.

gamemaster2200
gamemaster2200

 @DrKill09 Well, It's not like there gonna let you pay $10 for a 1 month subscription, let you download as much as music as you want and keep it after you cancel the subscription. Also if you pay to download the song, it's yours. Do whatever you like with it. Correct me if i'm wrong, If you buy a song on itunes, isn't it locked to your account where you can't even share it with, say a family member?. And Amazon where you literally can download it once after you buy it, and you're screwed if it gets deleted. Microsoft may not be the best about DRM, but they are way better than their biggest competition.

Vodoo
Vodoo

 @okassar I doubt they'll launch a new line of music players. Content-specific devices are going away since most people own smartphones. You don't need a separate music device if you have a smartphone. Microsoft is investing heavily in their new Windows Phone 8 and I'm sure the included media capabilities will easily trump the Zune players capabilities, not to mention the millions that already own an Apple or Android device will get access to Xbox Music as well.

larkin-54
larkin-54

 @Vickman178 Consoles are entertainment centers now and frankly its awesome right now in my dorm my xbox serves as the hub to which i coordinate all my media through my entertainment system and tv. Music, video, games, what ever and with kinect voice control im basically tony stark. Dont complain because you're not using your system to its full potential 

Vickman178
Vickman178

 @Landsharkk Ummm not really free since your paying for Xbox live to access plus $9.99 per month if you want it ad free... so thats 60$ a year for XBL and $120 a year for ad free music :\

Hvac0120
Hvac0120

 @Landsharkk The problem is that there are many competing services that work across multiple devices and operating systems. If Xbox Music is to compete with these other services it should be more broadly supported.

 

The FREE part goes away when you are trying to use your Xbox 360.

 

The FREE part is trying to lure me away from using services like Pandora and Spotify. Why would I make a switch if the new service doesn't offer me anything better?

 

Windows 8 has some good tweaks, but it's obvious that the UI was built for touch devices. This is a problem for a lot of people. There are also tons of people who just bought Windows 7 PCs and don't feel that an upgrade is necessary. 

 

An upgrade in Windows OS is not a free option. When upgrading iOS or Android, the update is free and so more people are willing to perform the update. When the update requires a fee (Win7 to Win8 is supposedly $40?) then there is a price barrier. People aren't going to pay to upgrade Windows just to use Xbox Music.

larkin-54
larkin-54

 @Albaficas haha remember home? yeah no one else does either Sony is not a paragon of taste and virtue. 

Slim_Lyrics
Slim_Lyrics

 @Dav_id83 It's a brilliant decision which creates more incentive to dump 7 for 8

okassar
okassar

 @Vodoo Maybe. Personally, I just don't want to drain my battery streaming music. Being in "communication darkness" for half the day simply because I had to listen to music for a couple hours is stupid.

Shadowdanc3r
Shadowdanc3r

 @Vickman178  @Landsharkk The article doesn't mention you need XBL Gold to use Xbox Music or Xbox Music Pass.  I'm not saying you're wrong, but a link to support your claims would be helpful.

jtthegame316
jtthegame316

 @Hvac0120  @Landsharkk the free goes away when using it on xbox. i have not seen or heard anything that says it is gold only. just that they have a zune pass like thing where you can steam anything for 8.99 a month.

Hvac0120
Hvac0120

 @Shadowdanc3r  @Vickman178  @Landsharkk Xbox Music won't be available for Silver members on Xbox 360. You have to have a Gold Membership.

 

Once you have XBL Gold you can get the ad-supported service for no additional charge. You pay the $9.99/month if you want to get rid of the ads.

 

Everyone can access the ad-supported service using a Windows 8 or Windows Phone 8 device. No XBL needed for those devices.

 

Yes; MS is missing a huge opportunity in attempt to attract customers to W8 and WP8. 

Shadowdanc3r
Shadowdanc3r

 @Vickman178  @Landsharkk Never mind, I found a link.  I don't know if it can be trusted though as it wouldn't make sense for MS to exclude Silver users from Xbox Music thereby missing out on potential ad revenue.

Hvac0120
Hvac0120

 @Landsharkk  @jtthegame316 Integrated, but only if you use Windows 8 or Windows Phone 8 or supported Xbox devices.

 

I don't see how a decent music service that doesn't do anything significantly different than its many competitors is incentive to spend money on new hardware or software. Paying for the service should be enough.

 

It's a music streaming service! C'mon! It's not a system selling piece of software. People aren't clammering for a replacement for their current services. There's little to no demand there.

 

This just itches like the poison that is the XBL Gold paywall. MS is putting the service into their "walled garden" a.k.a. the Metro...pardon...Modern Interface. All of the announced devices have some form of the Modern UI and I am sure that Xbox Music is a Metro app. At least there is not a yearly subscription (so far) that comes along with using Windows 8 as there is for using Xbox Live (yes; I know Silver members can buy stuff, but all the "free" services are off limits). So you only have to pay the initial fee. But that comes back to the fact that people don't need to pay out all of the money to get the right hardware and software to use services similar to what is being offered by Xbox Music.

Hvac0120
Hvac0120

 @Landsharkk  @jtthegame316 You're talking about hardware, not software. People upgrade their phones at the end of contracts because it's only cheap to do so. Upgrading a PC is significantly more costly.

 

If you look at only the Operating System software; smartphones get free updates as long as their hardware supports the new OS. Updates to a PC OS are not free even if your hardware does support it (Windows 8 has same hardware requirements as Windows 7).

 

There are valid complaints against having to upgrade to Windows 8 to access Xbox Music. It's going to cost people money. Maybe less than a smartphone, but the upgrade to Windows 8 also brings along a bunch of compatibility issues and other inherent issues of upgrading a PC that you don't see in the smartphone market. 

Landsharkk
Landsharkk

 @Hvac0120  @jtthegame316 That's the ironic/funny part though.  They already have Win7 so don't see a need to upgrade.  Yet, these same people will be happy to buy a new iphone or the next android device, even though they have no need to upgrade.

 

At least with upgrading the OS you get access to new and better stuff, including a seamless integration of all your Windows based devices (including Xbox). 

 

People continue to live with blinders on.  I can respect that Xbox Music costs money for ad-free service or that it requires a gold subscription to be used on the xbox.  But that doesn't mean MS is an evil company.  They are trying to create incentive and do actually give away free music on the devices that are not an xbox.

Hvac0120
Hvac0120

 @Landsharkk  @jtthegame316 The Xbox Music service is free on Windows 8, but you have to have Windows 8 in the first place. I think that is the focus of the negative comments. They have Windows 7 and don't need/want to upgrade.

Landsharkk
Landsharkk

 @Hvac0120  @jtthegame316 

 

Strangely, the majority of people complaining about it in the comments below tend to focus on Windows 8, phones and tablets (which is where it's FREE).  Which is exactly why I made my first few comments.  MS haters are going to hate, even if stuff is given to them for free.