Xbox Music to Offer free on-Demand Music on Tablet
Windows 8 users are in for a pleasant musical surprise: They’ll be able to handpick from a selection of millions of songs and stream them for free as long as they put up with an audio ad every 15 minutes.
The new service, called Xbox Music, is not on offer anywhere else at the moment. Although this is a step forward for the music industry, its appeal is limited by the expense of most mobile data plans. Most cost more the more data you use, which can make streaming music on cellular networks fairly expensive.
On PCs running Windows 8, Xbox Music will match Spotify’s offer of free track selection and playback.
In a demonstration on Friday, Xbox Music General Manager Jerry Johnson showed how one’s playlists are saved online and can be accessed when switching between the service on the Xbox 360 game console, a Windows Phone and a Windows 8 tablet.
Each iteration looked similar and had a clean interface with sharply detailed cover art. Xbox Music will be the default music player on all new Windows 8 devices, which will be available upon the launch of the new operating system on Oct. 26.
Current users of the Xbox — about 66 million worldwide — will gradually be introduced to the service with a 30-day free trial starting Tuesday.