Early this summer, T-Mobile announced a Music Freedom plan that would allow customers to stream music from select services without impacting their data allotment. Some people opposed this offering on principle. Others were simply upset to see their favorite services not supported. Around these parts, Google Play Music topped the list of what folks wanted to see.
Brazilian readers have had access to Google's music store and cloud song storage for only a couple of months, but it looks like they now have access to the subscription music service as well. Brazil has been added to the list of countries with access to, uh, All Access, and at least one Google+ user has been given the promotional message on the Google Play Music Android app. Hop to it, music fans.
The web browser version of Google Play Music isn't exactly full-featured - it pales in comparison even to built-in tools like Windows Media Player or iTunes. But now it has one more tool that's bringing it a little closer: a visualizer. A visualizer is an overlay that presets a visual accompaniment to a musical track. Some of them get pretty elaborate, some of them aren't much more than a graphic equalizer.
Guys, it's happening (....gif). The rumored YouTube music service that we've been hearing about for months is finally a reality. It's called YouTube Music Key, and it looks pretty great.
So here's the gist: it'll cost $7.99 a month (initially, at least - the price will eventually jump to $9.99), and includes full albums, background playback, offline viewing, and no ads. No ads. It's worth eight bucks a month just to get rid of the ads.
Lots and lots of people use Google Play Music. How many? 500 million, give or take a few. Google's music player shot past that mark just recently to join the likes of Google Chrome, Hangouts, and Google+ in the 500+ million club.
You might remember back in August an update to Google Play Music added public playlist search, which is neat. However, Google then pulled the feature. Presumably it wasn't ready for release at that time, but now it's back in the newest build, and you can download it below.
Remember when T-Mobile announced plans that included Music Freedom, which let users stream music from certain services without impacting their wireless data limits? Remember when it didn't include [insert your music streaming service of choice here], so you ignored it? Actually that isn't quite fair: Music Freedom support currently includes Pandora, Spotify, and iHeartRadio, which are the heavy hitters in the industry. But it's hard to deny that a lack of support for Google Play Music was kind of disheartening.
Update #1 (8/12/14): It looks like Google deleted the tweet embedded below. Between that and the lack of an update to this support page, someone might have pulled the trigger early. But if those countries don't have access yet, they probably will sometime soon.
Happy birthday, Chromecast. From your interesting but utilitarian beginnings you've turned into a streaming powerhouse, giving Android and Chrome users a ton of options for streaming music, video, and what have you. Just lately that also includes the super-cool capacity for transmitting mirrored audio and video from your phone or tablet right to your TV. It's been a good year, and to celebrate, Google is giving each and every Chromecast owner a free three-month subscription to Play Music All Access.