back to article Google lifts skirts, reveals Play All Access to UK market

Without much fanfare, Google Play's on-demand streaming service has launched in the UK. Google Play All Access is priced at £9.99 per month and offers mobile access … and only runs on web browsers and Android devices, for now. GPAA enters a crowded market with Spotify, Deezer, Xbox Music and Sony Unlimited offering very …

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  1. OneArmJack

    UK vs Euro pricing

    Google should be made to explain why the service costs £9.99 in the UK and only €9.99 in the Euro countries. I can accept differences in UK vs US pricing - tax, consumer law etc - but the only excuse for this is if they are being charged more for UK rights.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: UK vs Euro pricing

      "Google should be made to explain..."

      Eh? Why should they be *made* to explain. They are not breaking any laws. EUR is only around 10% difference to GBP and how many songs are there in English compared to other European Languages.

      There are taxes, licence costs, music rights, supply etc that could all influence the price.

      Also many shops do a direct 1GBP = 1EUR swap.

      1. OneArmJack

        Re: UK vs Euro pricing

        Point taken; '...asked...' instead of '...made...' would have been a better wording. At today's exchange rate it's about £16/year difference between £ and € prices, so they are effectively getting 6 weeks for free.

        Google's pricing is:

        £9.99

        €9.99

        $9.99

        I'd be very surprised if differences in costs led to such convenient pricing.

        1. julianh72
          Happy

          Re: UK vs Euro pricing

          It's AU$11.99 in Oz (AU$9.99 for the early adopters). At current exchange rates, AU$11.99 is US$10.93, €8.17, or £7.03.

          This would be the first time in living memory that Australians have had a good deal for buying ANYTHING on-line - we usually pay a substantial FUYAA Tax* of 20% - 50% or more on software and hardware purchases. (Maybe you Euro / Brit music lovers should get an Australian VPN account?)

          (* F#%k You, You're An Australian)

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: UK vs Euro pricing

      Or they just charge what they can get away with, like stock-holder owned companies should.

    3. SiempreTuna

      Re: UK vs Euro pricing

      I don't see how tax and consumer law justifies Google charging very nearly double in the UK (£9.99) compared to the US ($8 / £5.16) - that's daylight robbery. They clearly think Brits are too thick and / or too insular to know what the prices are elsewhere and to be able to apply the appropriate exchange rate.

      Not that I would ever spend money on a music service given the vast variety of free, themed radio stations on t'interweb already.

    4. dotslash

      Re: UK vs Euro pricing

      well yeah, that is indeed ridiculous.

      I'll just continue to use their cloud services for free whilst I get my wares by other means...

    5. wikkity

      Re: UK vs Euro pricing

      Is £9.99 and €9.99 really that much different to worry about. People want a fixed price, not one that changes hourly based on FX rates

    6. Kay Burley ate my hamster
      FAIL

      Re: UK vs Euro pricing

      Why anyone would vote your comment down is beyond me. Google is a company like any other, there to squeeze every last penny they can from us. OK in the past they haven't done the Microsoft/Apple trick of charging the same number in different currencies but then again they haven't really charged for much so far.

      I'll stick with Grooveshark.com, being an early adopter of their subscription model netted me a special rate of $30 per year. And they will answer your emails.

    7. Ben 56

      Re: UK vs Euro pricing

      I may be wrong, but within the EU aren't we free to purchase a product from where ever we want due to the single free trade area?

      If Google attempts to segregate I believe there is a case to sue.

      1. Dan Dodex
        WTF?

        Re: UK vs Euro pricing

        Exactly, the whole point of the EU is that I should be able to buy Google's subscription from for example France and pay €10 a month instead of £10.

        Are they blocking this? That'd be illegal.

    8. I like noodles

      Re: UK vs Euro pricing

      Whilst it might get on my goat that they'll charge on a £ = € basis, I don't see why Google should be made to explain (and to whom?).

      It's their business, no-one has to use it, so they can charge what they like where they like.

    9. Amorous Cowherder
      Facepalm

      Re: UK vs Euro pricing

      YOU may not think it's fair, I may not think it's fair but they're the company and if they want to raise prices above the going rate of other that's entirely their business. This aspect of the Google empire is not exactly a monopoly is it? When a monopoly does that with prices, then yes you could very well complain as much as you like and people might listen.

      Ultimately if they want to charge more than others than that's their loss if people don't like it.

    10. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: UK vs Euro pricing

      And if that is the cause for the difference, why not come right out and say so.

      I suspect it's the old marketing 99p thing. Supposedly making it look as little like one number while getting as close to it as possible.

    11. Pete the not so great
      Thumb Down

      Re: UK vs Euro pricing

      Dam tootin', they should charge £7.234623746328746328746

  2. DaLo

    Google already allow you to buy individual music or upload 20,000 tracks free of charge, you don't need this service to do it.

    1. Gashead

      It's great but I have around 35,000 tracks. I wish they would allow me to use my paid for storage to keep the lot on there.

  3. Dave 126 Silver badge

    Grr

    Thought I'd have a look, just to get the gist of which artists they have available (Spotify has some curious omissions). "Ohh, 30 day free trial" I thought. Clicked 'next', but oh no: It's the old 'give your card details for the free trial and maybe you'll forget to cancel before we start charging you' game.

    https://play.google.com/about/music/

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Grr

      Yeah, cause if they just just let any fule sign up for a free trial without some unique verifiable means of identifying them, nobody would think of just using an endless series of free trials. Stop yer moaning. If you're seriously considering paying for it, then you should have no problem giving your payment details in advance, remembering to cancel really shouldn't be that hard.

      1. Dave 126 Silver badge

        Re: Grr

        >without some unique verifiable means of identifying them

        I'd have thought that my long-standing Google account, or Android phone would satisfy that requirement. I wouldn't say that I had no intention of signing up, but rather the whole point of a trial is to determine whether I might want to. The selection of artists available is an important differentiator from Spotify or Sony's offering, and I couldn't see any immediate link to that information.

        On an off topic but audio-related note: I'm glad to see a new flagship Android phone (hint, not HTC, Samsung, Sony or Motorola) being released week with hardware support for 192Khz 24bit audio playback, and with appropriate APIs to make up for Android's native audio limitations. Existing portable solutions seem to be either unwieldy (iDevice plus camera kit plus external DAC) or expensive (Colorfly).

      2. MissingSecurity
        Pint

        Re: Grr

        Don't be dense...ITS GOOGLE. One of the reason I subbed to spotify was because I could play them for free with ADs and explore thier music library than decided to purchase it. Its one of the most annoying things in this shift to Streamed music, which is having to find a site which has the music you want only to find they can't play it becuase some dickhead executives want excusivitiy.

        I would prefer that Artists decouple themsleves from Record Labels and be able to work out better deals for themseleves, but that seems doubtless. It looks more likely that the Record Companies will force there ignorance into the tech powering all this. With this being the case, if I can't try it out, I am going to ignroe it.

        1. Dave 126 Silver badge

          Re: Grr

          One can imagine these streaming services taking the place of record labels... after all, there is no longer the initial outlay of pressing x thousand compact discs.

  4. robert_raw

    It is a bit of a pain in the neck to find it on the browser and I had to sign out and back in again on my mobile to access it.

  5. Law

    The "Add to library" option - I can't see in their help files whether those albums persist in your library once you've ended your subscription or not.

    I've been playing with it this morning and I like it - if I was going to go full blown subscription it would need to be around the £6 mark though, not £8. Who knows, I might get hooked in the next 30 days.

    1. Rimpel
      Facepalm

      >The "Add to library" option - I can't see in their help files whether those albums persist in your library once you've ended your subscription

      If they persisted then that would be known as a 'purchase'. Are you really suggesting that you might pay for 1 month, add 20,000 tracks to your library and voila you have a permanent music collection?

      Here you go: "Music saved from All Access will remain available offline on your device for as long as your All Access subscription is active. If you stop subscribing to All Access, the music you’ve downloaded from will be no longer be available offline through your account."

      https://support.google.com/googleplay/answer/3139564?hl=en

      1. Law
        Pint

        Well yes, as nice as that would have been I would assume that wouldn't happen. :)

        It doesn't stop them linking to the album or greying it out once your subscription is lapsed so you can purchase them later though.

        I probably should have worded it better but my point was, I'd "added" a few new albums from artists that I'd not heard of before through their radio playlists, so when my subscription stops, will I at least have the option to buy them without having to remember what I've added when they just vanish without a trace.

        Thanks for the link though, you'd found more on it than I had.

  6. Michel Carroll

    let's see how much of this sum trickles down to the artists and composers before we make a judgement. That's the kind of choice I would like to be invited to make.

  7. Gashead

    Great For Amazon!

    I gave it a spin this morning and instantly fell in love with Radiodread by the Easy Star All-Stars. Having a Sonos system at home I wanted a top quality version so I go along to Amazon and buy the CD for later ripping to FLAC and through the powers of AutoRip I have an instant copy I can download. Until, and it will never happen, Google sell CDs or at a minimum FLAC CD quality downloads Amazon will get my real money.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Great For Amazon!

      I fell into a boozer the other day, and they were playing a track from The Dub Side of the Moon, by the Easy Dub All Stars... then, instead of EDAS's take on 'Money', some random track by another artist was played. When the barman came out to the beer garden to hang out some bar towels to dry, I pointed out to him that one plays Pink Floyd albums not tracks, but he looked nonplussed and mumbled something about his iPod being on 'reggae'.

      Since the beer was crap anyway, it was time for the next boozer - which serves the best bitter in the South West (and maybe England - we'll see come the awards in London this Tuesday)

    2. julianh72
      Thumb Up

      Re: RadioDread

      If you like RadioDread, you really MUST now create an All Access "Radio Station based on Easy Star All Stars (or better yet, just seek out and listen to "Dub Side of the Moon") - best Pink Floyd cover EVER!!!

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I tried it

    And thought it was pretty good, add to library works well and the 'radio' stuff is OK too. I already used Google Music so it a natural step.

    For £8 you get offline access to all the music that you have added to your library in the mobile and desktop clients. This is slightly cheaper than Spotify's service.

    Need a nice way of integrating this into my Hi-Fi. Simplest is PC with browser -> USB DAC (HRT Music Streamer II) -> Amp. But would be nice to use Android as remote control.

  9. Mark2410

    Pricing

    Dear Google, your pricing suggests you dont really want £'s so i'll do you a favour and not give you any of mine.

  10. 27escape
    FAIL

    missing lots of content

    Plus the high bit rate stuff I uploaded, seems to come back to me at a very low bitrate.

    £9.99 compares to spotify, so the £7.99 early adaptor price would be a draw if it had more of the music I like

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "GPMAA" rolls off the tongue...like a hairball

    Is the number of words in a product/service name an indicator of how evil a company has become? Compare with Microsoft Windows 8 Xbox Music Radio...

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