Talking tech since 2003

Today, Microsoft released mobile apps for its all-in-one music-listening service, Xbox Music. You can get the app now on your iOS or Android device (not just Windows Phone anymore), and listen to the service’s “30 million” strong song library. Additionally, Microsoft announced the new web browser-streaming feature, and that it’s available now for free (with occasional short ads between songs).

Just be sure you’re the proud owner of an Xbox Music Pass if you want use the new app. Though it can be purchased for $100 (for 12 months of access), anyone can attain a free 30 day trial first to give it a whirl.

Within the app, you can listen to any artists or bands listed in the service, create custom radio stations and playlists, and have access to “unlimited skips” on suggested songs you don’t enjoy. Though Xbox Music on iOS and Android requires a persistent Internet connection for streaming as of now, the company plans to bring “offline mode to iOS and Android in the coming months,” for playing any of your purchased, downloaded music.

xboxmusicapp

In addition to the new mobile apps, Microsoft also announced a service-wide update that allows anyone to stream music from Xbox Music through their web browser of choice at no charge. All you have to do to start listening is head to the Xbox Music website and start making playlists.

Microsoft took a few moments at the end of their news-wire announcement to make note of some new features that will be added to Xbox Music “over the coming months.” Firstly, the company will add Web Playlists, which will observe a webpage you’re viewing, determine what artists are mentioned or listed, and generate an instant playlist within Xbox Music that you can begin listening to immediately. Imagine using Web Playlists to preview concert listings and music festival lineups, and you’ll get an idea of its potential usefulness.

xbox music

Secondly, the company plans to add Bing Smart Search, which will focus its integration on helping you find artists, songs, albums and videos from Xbox Music’s “rich field of content” using Bing’s highly-touted search tools.

Lastly, Microsoft will introduce the aforementioned Radio feature to web browser-based users at some point in the near future. This feature will allow you to create and launch instant playlists based on artists you enjoy, mixed in with other artists you might not be aware of. Yes, it’s a lot like Pandora, but with Xbox branding.

But unlike Pandora, Xbox Music allows you to buy your music directly within the service. You won’t have to hit up Amazon MP3 or iTunes if you simply have to have a song then and there – and though you might care to buy from more conventional digital storefronts, at least the option is there for those interested.

banjo

Xbox Music is now available on just about any glowing rectangle you own — your phone, your tablet, your TV (through Xbox 360), and your PC. Thankfully, the service keeps tabs on wherever your music is being bought and downloaded, and keeps it synced across all your platforms, according to Microsoft. So if you’ve got an Xbox Music Pass, scoop up the app and let us know what you think!

If you don’t have a pass — who cares! Start streaming for free on your PC whenever you like.


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