Amazon Prime adds music streaming to the mix


Amazon is launching a Prime Music, a streaming service available at no additional cost for Prime members, offering one million tracks to stream... compared to Spotify's 20 million.

Prime members will be able to listen to hundreds of pre-programmed Prime Playlists that are artist-, genre-, mood- or activity-based.

Users can create their own playlists with Prime Music tracks, receive personalised recommendations, and download any of the Prime material to mobile devices so that they can listen offline.

Customers can rate and review playlists but for now there is no social networking component. Nor is Amazon doing any kind of custom Internet radio service.

The online retailer joins a congested field that is only becoming more so, with names such as Spotify, Pandora, Google, and Apple which has iTunes radio and recently bought beats for $3.2bn.

Prime Music will be ad-free and device agnostic, working on Android and iOS phones and tablets, Amazon's own Kindle Fire tablets, plus PCs and Macs.

But the one million songs being made available for free streaming at launch pale compared to the 25 million available for download or purchase through Amazon's online music store, or the more than 20 million tracks available on Spotify.

Amazon says that customers with Kindle Fire HD/HDX devices will get Prime Music in an automatic, over-the-air update.

Customers with iOS or Android devices can also download the latest Amazon Music app in Apple's App Store or the Google Play Store. Amazon is also letting non-Prime members sample Prime Music free for 30 days.

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