While Zune faltered as a music platform, Android is still cracking away at breaking Apple's monopoly over the digital music distribution market. They've announced that Sony's Music Unlimited
service is coming to Android 1.2 tablets, naturally including the Sony Tablet. Subscription prices run from around $4 to $10 for us Americans, but this is where I get a little skeptical. The reason people love iTunes is because it's not purely a subscription--you just pay a dollar or two for a song without a monthly fee. Hopefully Sony's Music Unlimited is better than the Zune Marketplace, but I have yet to see a less proprietary and more flexible music store that I really like.
Sony Entertainment Network's Music Unlimited Service Cranks Up the Music on Android
Sony's Cloud-Based Music Service Offers a Global Catalogue of Over 10 Million Tracks to Sony Tablet and other Android-based Tablets
FOSTER CITY, Calif., Oct. 19, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Sony Network Entertainment ("SNEI") today announced that the Music Unlimited cloud-based, streaming digital music service is now available for the Android-based Sony Tablet worldwide(i).
"As one of the largest digital entertainment services, Sony Entertainment Network aims to bring new ways for consumers to enjoy digital music and video," said Tim Schaaff, President, Sony Network Entertainment. "The launch of the Music Unlimited service on Sony Tablet marks one of our many significant steps to satisfying the mobile demands of our current consumers while opening up our cloud-based music service to completely new audiences."
The release of the Music Unlimited service's Android v1.2 application – previously only available on compatible Android-based phones – adds Sony Tablet and other Android-based tablets(ii) to SNEI's growing ecosystem, and improves a consumer's music experience with an upgraded user interface. Subscribers can now create playlists faster, easily discover related artists and songs, quickly navigate between the album view and catalog, and return more streamlined search results.
The Music Unlimited service, which operates in nine countries and has a global catalog of over 10 million tracks(iii), is available as a native app on Sony Tablet. For compatible Android phones and tablets, the Music Unlimited service v1.2 app is currently available for download in the Android Marketplace.
A Basic subscription to the Music Unlimited service is $3.99, 3.99 pounds Sterling, euro 3.99, AU$4.99 or NZ$5.99/month and a Premium subscription is $9.99, 9.99 pounds, euro 9.99, AU$12.99 or NZ$13.99/month. Starting today, Sony Tablet users who are first-time subscribers to the Music Unlimited service can get a 180-day trial of the Basic subscription plan.
In addition to Sony Tablet and other Android tablets, users can access the Music Unlimited service on a wide variety of network-enabled Sony devices including 2010 and 2011 models of network-enabled BRAVIA® HDTVs, Blu-ray Disc™ players and Blu-ray Disc Home Theater systems as well as PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system, PSP™ (PlayStation®Portable), personal computers including VAIO® personal computers, Xperia™ and other compatible Android-based mobile phones.
For more information, find Sony Entertainment Network online: www.sonyentertainmentnetwork.com, www.facebook.com/sonyentertainment, www.twitter.com/sonyentnet.