Today is a big day for Xbox Music: we’re releasing on iOS and Android and we’re also adding free streaming to our Web player, making Xbox Music and its 30 million tracks available on millions more devices and for free to anyone with a Web browser.
Xbox Music is coming up on its one-year anniversary and we’ve learned a lot in that time. Xbox Music is now, more than ever, a service that spans across all kinds of devices—phones, tablets, PCs and TVs—and unites artists with their fans through one common platform.
We continue to make milestone achievements in our journey with Xbox Music, positioning us to solve several problems that exist today. A lot of people use multiple music services to get the songs and albums they want. Does this sound familiar? You’re listening to Pandora and bookmark a song you love. Later, you open Spotify and use your subscription to listen to the song over and over again on repeat. And then you use iTunes or Amazon to purchase the song for your own collection that wasn’t available for streaming. We’ve all been there.
As a fan of music, I don’t think enjoying the songs I love should be this complicated or disconnected. To solve this problem, last year my team introduced Xbox Music, an all-in-one music service that gives you the independence to stream music for free, subscribe to all the music you want or download to own your favorite songs. And it’s all integrated across your tablet, PC, phone and TV.
Since we launched, we’ve done a lot of work to continuously roll out new features and updates. We unveiled new features for Xbox Music on Windows 8, a redesign of the Xbox Music interface in Windows 8.1 and even the first version of a Web-based Xbox Music player earlier this summer. Today, we continue to deliver.
Xbox Music Available on iOS & Android. Xbox Music is now available on iOS and Android devices1 worldwide, expanding the number of devices the service is available on. And this is only the beginning. We’ll continue to improve the service on these platforms bringing offline mode to iOS and Android in the coming months.
Free Streaming on any Web Browser. Today we’re also releasing an update to our Web-based music player to introduce free streaming on the Web. That means you can simply visit http://music.xbox.com and begin listening to free music immediately.
Xbox Music will continue to grow and evolve over the coming months, too, with the addition of the following features and updates:
Web Playlist. A new Web Playlist feature is built into the Xbox Music app for Windows 8.1. The tool scans for artists’ mentions on a given Web page and creates a custom playlist of their music. Think about the Web page of your favorite radio station, or an upcoming music festival, and all the bands and songs included on that Web page. Web Playlist identifies all that music and creates an instant, custom playlist inside Xbox Music with the simple touch of a button. We’ll release Web Playlist along with Windows 8.1 on Oct. 18.
Bing Smart Search. Xbox Music is integrated seamlessly into Bing Smart Search for Windows 8.1. Using Bing Smart Search, you can find musicians, bands and artists presented in a rich field of content, including top songs, albums, videos, images and relevant Web pages. If you select a track from the song list in the Bing results, it will immediately begin playing in the Xbox Music app. By collaborating with the Windows and Bing teams, Xbox Music on Windows 8.1 will make it easier than ever to find tons of great info about your favorite artists and instantly listen to the music you love without backing in and out of apps.
Radio comes to the Web. Creating a new form of artist-based radio, the Radio feature is a quick and dynamic way to personalize your collection, discover new favorites and create ultimate playlists by launching instant mixes based on your favorite artists. With unlimited skips and a view of the full recommended music stream, Radio puts you in control of your Internet radio experience. Radio will release to the Xbox Music web player later this year.
We look forward to sharing more from Xbox Music, so stay tuned. In the meantime, for more information, go to http://www.xbox.com/en-US/music.
1 Free streaming available only on the Web and devices running Windows 8 or later. Limited hours of free streaming after six months; unlimited with paid subscription. Coming later this fall: artist-based radio on Android, iOS and the Web.