People in the music industry are saying that Google is looking into buying a streaming music service. Sources told New York Post, “They‘ve been having discussions with banks about how they’re shaping their future music strategy.”
Google already has a music streaming service called “Google Play Music All Access”. Their music service is comparable feature-wise to competitors, but has not enjoyed the popularity that services like Pandora and Spotify enjoy. With Apple buying up Beats, Google may be feeling pressure to make a stronger push in this market.
The easiest way to solve this problem, but certainly not the cheapest, is to buy a well established company already providing a music streaming service. As mentioned before, Pandora and Spotify are two services that come to mind when talking about this. The thinking is that it may be wise for Google to work out a deal to buy Spotify before the company goes public and its value goes up further. Pandora has already gone public is is valued at over $5 billion dollars.
While allegedly considering buying another service, Google through YouTube is working on yet another music subscription service called “Music Pass”. The streaming service through YouTube is a good strategy as the video streaming site is already an avenue of music discovery – through music videos.
My personal thoughts on the matter is that Google’s current streaming service is a solid offering and I use it myself and love it. I think All Access has all things needed to be great right now – except a solid brand. Most people you talk to on the street are not aware of the search giant’s music offering, or are only vaguely aware of it. Buying someone who is already successful in the industry and who has the name recognition is a good strategy, and in the end current subscribers of both services will likely get a boost in available content.
The last burning question is if they decide to move ahead and buy someone, who will it be? It’s hard to say, besides Spotify and Pandora there are other services like Rhapsody and Rdio. But I think they are most likely to buy a service that has great name recognition. It’s also possible Google won’t do anything at all, and instead just try to rebrand everything under Music Pass when it is released or double down on their current strategy.
What do you think? Would you like to see Spotify or Pandora become part of Google or does the idea seem crazy? Let us know in the comments below.