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Android Headliner: Google Play Music Lifted Device Limit, So what?

October 17, 2015 - Written By Alexander Maxham

Last year, Google introduced their deauthorization limit for Google Play Music. Where you could only have ten devices on your account and deauthorize four devices a year. Now for most people, that doesn’t sound like an issue right? 10 devices on a single plan shouldn’t be an issue. However, each time you do a factory reset, that counts as another device. Each time you flash a new ROM, that’s a new device. For me, my Sony Xperia Z3 (which I’ve only had one) is listed about 7 times on my account. Now we can call up and ask Google Support to remove all the devices, but we shouldn’t need too. No other streaming music service has a deauthorization limit or even requires us to do it. So once I was unable to use Google Play Music All Access on my device, I up and cancelled my account and jumped over to Spotify and never looked back.

This week, with a new update to Google Play Music, Google lifted the deauthorization limit, so now we can use Google Play Music on as many devices as we’d like. Likely because of the new family plan which Google announced alongside the Nexus smartphones a few weeks back. Google Play Music’s family plan costs you $14.99 and has up to six profiles. This way your music doesn’t appear on your wife’s device, or vice versa. Which is a great idea, and something Google should have brought a long time ago. So now deauthorizations are gone. But is that going to get me, and the others that switched due to the deauthorization limit to go back? Nope.

Google Play Music was the first streaming music service I paid for. Before that, I was using internet radio like CBS Radio, iHeart Radio and Pandora. After I left Google Play Music, I went to Spotify and have loved every minute of it. It has a better app experience on multiple platforms. For example there is a standalone app available on the desktop. With Google you’re stuck using the website. Discovering new music is also much easier on Spotify than Google Play Music. So basically what I’m saying to Google Play Music is, too little too late.

It’s great to see Google removed the deauthorization limit, but I still am a firm believer that it should have never existed in the first place. We’ll see if it makes a comeback in a few months or years, because it actually did before. When Google Play Music first launched (called “Google Music” back then) there was a limit on deauthorizing devices, and that was removed until last year. So we’ll have to wait and see. But it is great to see that either enough of us left Google Play Music and went elsewhere due to this, or the fact that Google heard us, and are making the necessary changes. It’s a great thing for existing users.

Also, if you haven’t used Google Play Music Unlimited (formerly Google Play Music All Access, I know, I know, these names) you can get 90 days (also known as 3 months) free with the new Nexus 6P and Nexus 5X. Additionally, Google is giving you $50 in Google Play Credit.