It's time to take a step back in time and enjoy some of the tunes gifted to future generations from the 20th century. Google's offering three jazz albums for free in the US. One, entitled Playlist: The Very Best Of Billie Holiday, contains fifteen tracks (though it somehow lacks Strange Fruitedit: see this enlightening comment for an explanation). Playlist: The Very Best Of Miles Davis provides ten tracks from, you guessed it, Miles Davis.
Google just rolled out an update to Play Music, but not for the app. This time it's the web interface that is getting a fresh coat of paint—an interesting shade of Android app. Yes, the web interface looks almost exactly like the app now.
Last Wednesday Google updated Play Music to version 5.9. We tore into it as we are wont to do, but we found nothing in the way of user-facing changes (though we did see code that hints at a future way to handle when two or more devices try to use the same Chromecast at once). Google has pushed out two other 5.9 updates since then, and now we have a changelog.
Google semi-regularly offers free albums on the Play Store, and here's one for the ages. No, seriously. We're talking such timeless hits as Nocturnes, Op. 9: No. 1 in B-Flat Minor and Messiah: Hallelujah! These and thirteen other tracks are waiting for those who jump on this opportunity to download the Play Classical album. This deal is probably limited to the US, but you never know.
The free selection has varied greatly over the past several months.
Update Wednesday came and went this week, leaving us with about a dozen new and updated apps. Project Fi and Google Connectivity Services were added to the Play Store in preparation for Google's first MVNO customers, and new versions were rolled out to bring Quick Reply to Messenger and prepare Google+ for the wide release of Collections. A small bump to Google Play Music also made the list, but there wasn't much in the way of visible changes.
A fresh release of Play Music is going out to devices, and it brings a bit more consistency to another one of Google's apps. Now the navigation menu that extends from the side of the screen will reach up through the notification bar.
Left: Old, Right: New.
That's not the only element of the interface that's reaching upwards. When you go to play a track, you will find that the album artwork extends to the top of the screen as well.
There's a new version of the Play Music app rolling out, and you know what that means. Yes, Google will be cruelly keeping you from having the new version for a few days as the staggered rollout continues. Luckily, we've got the APK below. This is a reasonably big update with some layout changes, feature tweaks, and more.
Over the summer, Google bought Songza, a music streaming company that provides playlists suited for certain moods and times of day. The Big G has left the service running, but that didn't stop it from integrating the functionality with Play Music several months later. This brought recommended playlists to the "Listen Now" area of the Android app and website for listeners in the US and Canada. Now the functionality has expanded to the UK.
Anybody who owns an ADT-1 has noticed the inexplicable absence of a Play Music app, something that became even more apparent after the Nexus Player began shipping with it. Well, the wait is finally over! An update to the Play Music app began rolling out earlier today, and it includes a banner on the Leanback Launcher for those of us with Google's development hardware. If you've got a Nexus Player, you haven't been left out with this update.
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.