Google is reportedly working on a music service that could launch next week, according to two reports.
Wired’s unnamed sources say the service could be called “Google Music,” “Google Audio” or “OneBox,” and would give users enhanced options for music searches. Search results would bring up a box with streaming music from either the music recommendation site iLike or the streaming ad download service Lala, chosen at random. Major labels are involved, and are putting together videos and other assets for the service, Wired reports.
The story was originally broken by TechCrunch, which has since received an invitation to a Hollywood event with Lala and iLike, which will presumably unveil the service. The invitation, which you can see below, is billed “Discover Music!” This suggests that the service will help users find new music and won’t compete directly with full streaming services such as Spotify and Napster.
It’s not yet clear what, exactly, Google has up its sleeve, but if it’s just a search engine for streaming music, I’ll be somewhat underwhelmed. There are already lots of options for free streaming that emphasizes discovery. Songza.fm, for instance, pulls streams from around the Internet, and MySpace Music lets you build playlists from its extensive streaming library. Even Lala lets you stream songs and create playlists.
If the early reports are correct, Google’s service would grab a hold of people looking for music before they reached any of those other services. That’s great for Google, but just a little more convenient for users. Google’s involvement adds weight to any new service, but let’s not blow this one out of proportion.