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Amazon Launches New US Music Streaming Service

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Earlier this year speculation was rife about a possible new music streaming service from Amazon, and now the Internet giant has confirmed that it is to launch a streaming service to its Prime customers.

The service has thus far only been made available to Prime subscribers in the United States and it is not known yet if the same service will be made available to Amazon customers worldwide.

Amazon’s Prime customers in the US currently pay $99 a year for the service, which allows subscribers to access Amazon’s lending library of eBooks, films and TV shows. US customers will now be able download music as well.

However, some Prime customers might be underwhelmed by the limited amount of music tracks that Amazon has to offer. It is reportedly in talks with major record labels to bring its customers more music, but at the moment Amazon doesn’t offer the extensive catalogue that services such as Spotify do.

As part of Amazon’s music streaming service, customers can access one million tracks compared to the 30 million that are offered from other services. The songs can be downloaded onto an iOS, Android or Kindle Fire device; tracks can also be downloaded to a Mac or PC. In addition, streamed music can be listened to when customers are offline.

Another downside with the Amazon’s music streaming option is the fact that there isn’t a lot of recent music available; as reported on Buzzfeed, Amazon’s music streaming service is restricted to tracks that are older than six months.

According to a press release from Amazon, the service will provide ad-free access to music with no extra costs; artists will include Madonna, Daft Punk, Bruno Mars and Bruce Springsteen.

Users of the streaming service can select their own playlist, or Amazon will do it for them with a pre-selected set of songs such as the “50 Great '90s Alternative Songs” playlist or “Madonna's Top Songs” playlist.

Jeff Bezos, Amazon founder and CEO, said:

“When Prime launched nine years ago, the program offered Free Two-Day Shipping on one million items. Today, that selection has grown to over 20 million items. Prime Instant Video now offers unlimited streaming of more than 40,000 movies and TV episodes, up from 5,000 at launch three years ago. And the Kindle Owners’ Lending Library now features more than half a million books to borrow for free.”

“…we’re introducing Prime Music—more than a million songs from some of music’s best artists, plus hundreds of expert-programmed Prime Playlists, all at no additional cost. Prime Music is the latest great addition for Prime members and we think they’re going to love it.”

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