Watch this space for a live blog of today’s Google Music Store event. You can watch the live feed at Google’s YouTube Android channel — right here. Click the big headline above to read it as it goes.
11:52 PT A lot of mood music. The message seems to be sleep, sleep. I am nodding off here.
2:02 Fashionably late, two minutes in the spacey music stops. We are confronted by the smurfy Android logo icons — I can imagine them in a cartoon. Sorry. They do look dorky, though. lol.
2: 03 And … nothing. Four people just skyped me that their feeds for the announcement just jammed. Refresh : )
2:11 Okay, it’s about to start. Fade to black. Cue music. I hope not more Monogold.
2:12 Okay Google’s Jamie Rosenberg is onstage. blah blah Google “improves people’s lives.” Is that true? I think later I should assign someone a story to examine that statement.
2:14 A lot about Google, free songs came with Google + , he says. Yes I suspected Google + to play a big role at this event. It is ubiquitous at Google now.
2:15 Dig at Apple. Other music services make you “pay for music you already own.”
2:14 Call it Google Music. This is the official name of the project. The demo — the front end is the Android or Google Music Manager. Plays nice with iTunes — but it is iTunes like. A store. For sure pure store.
2:15 200 million Andriod devices have Google Music beta activated. Is that right? I think he is mistaken. Well, I guess, worldwide. Hmm.
2:25 EVERY TIME YOU BUY A SONG YOU’LL BE ABLE TO RECOMMEND AND SHARE TO EVERYONE YOU WANT ON GOOGLE+
2:26 This has never been done — point of sale immediately sharing of music.
2:26 Music.google.com — plus music manager automatically updating in stores over next few hours. Everything is available now. The new stores. The sharing of music — this system lets you browse by genre, new releases or staff picks — “even better you can listen to the songs” your Google + contacts send to u. EMI, Universal< Sony Music, several Indie labels, a bunch of integrators — even Iota. Wow. They nabbed all the deals. If this delivers, with the features just announced, we have before us a real attractive alternative to iTunes. That’s never happened either.
2:30 13 million tracks, 8 mil are live today. rest are being added, thanks for patience, she says, another google exec.
2:31 CEOs of Merlin, EMI and I believe Sony are on stage now. Buster Rhymes (spelling?) the iconic rapper, she says, will be releasing his new single on the service today. Live albums from Shakira and others — did she say Cold Play and REM? — will be available for free today. That’s cool.
2:33 There’s an Artist Hub built into Google Music that lets aspiring musicians and musical artists in general upload and sell their music in the Google Music store. Here’s a video with a bunch of aspiring pro musicians singing the praises of the Artist Hub. I wonder how much Google paid them? LOL. No. Seriously!
2:34 As the video rolls, let me tell u some of the stuff I didn’t type above — the female google exec made a great statement that gets to the heart of Google Music. Friends are the single most common way people hear of and buy new music.
2:40 Oh, no. They have Monogold there. I am sorry. I am just not into all-computerized music.
2:40 Artists can upload songs or albums — metadata like pricing — they can enable unlimited free play. They keep 70 percent of rev. Google gets rest, I guess! But the service is for free — and every Google + for free can get one track the artists send. A tie in to YouTube’s recently announced Merchandise Store.
2:43 A lot of emphasis on this ability to upload songs and whole albums — in my mind, this is the music equivalent to you.tube. music.google.com/artists to participate
2:43 Tiesto, Feather and Bell, Trick Mode (?) bands who are releasing on Google Music today. This service will be built into 200m Android devices, partner is T-Mobile.
2:45 T-Mobile guy on stage … longtime Google partner. The deal is — if you buy songs off Google music, you can pay for them off your T-Mobile phone bill. T-Mobile guy is rambling a bit. Giving stats. Video consumption is half the data on T-Mobile’s network, mobile audio is 15 percent. “Who knows how high” that number will get with Google Music? he asks. A great way to share the music you love with your friends — combine a fast 4G network with Google Music, plus sharing on Google Plus, on fast phones like upcoming Samsung Nexus (first android 4.0.1. ice cream sandwich phones. Smartphones — fast ones from companies like HTC, he says, will be a part.
2:49 Google Music. Up today. Free to every Android user. market.android.com in the US, rolled out over next few days. Also anything you buy you can share on Google + this is a first in music history, no other major music retailer offers this kind of access, and TMobile will have a deal to get some free music, including all the free music Amazon is offering.
2:50 He closes with this sentence: Google Music is now open for business.