Google Play Music Launched in India
Earlier, we reported on Google announcing YouTube Go for the data-conscious Indian consumer. Now, Google has brought something for the data-happy customer in India: Google Play Music.
The Google Play Music service has finally been launched in India, although there has been no official announcement blog post to this effect. But since the service is now live, users can purchase songs and albums from the Play Music app in India. Users can also upload their existing library onto Play Music. However, the Google Play Music All Access service is not available for purchase yet, and since there has been no official announcement yet, there is no word on whether this streaming service will come to the market soon.
Pricing on Google Play Music does seem expensive keeping in mind the average purchasing power of a smartphone user (encompassing the high and low ends of the market), as well as the local competition in the digital library space. For example, Google Play Music is charging a flat ₹15 ($0.23) per song, with albums ranging from ₹75 to ₹190 ($1.13-$2.86). On the other hand, Airtel’s Wynk Music lets you purchase individual songs at ₹10 ($0.15), while Apple Music charges either ₹7 or ₹15 ($0.11-$0.23) per song. There’s a lot more competition in the streaming arena, with local players like Saavn and Gaana already having a foothold, and even Amazon planning to dip its toes.
India is on the verge of a data revolution, with smartphone users witnessing high speed internet at cheap rates for perhaps the first time after the entry of Reliance Jio in the market. Jio is currently offering free 4G LTE usage (FUP capped at 4GB per day) upto 31st December 2016, and at very competitive prices beyond that period. With consumers responding extremely enthusiastically — heck, I haven’t been able to land a SIM yet since all stores are sold out — it is no surprise that everyone wants to hitch a ride on this data bandwagon. The next couple of months have scope to transform India into a priority market for digital goods and media.
For now, Google Play Music has its work cutout. How Google plays the service, app and its Android ecosystem into its advantage, remains to be seen.
What are your thoughts on Google Play Music launching in India? Let us know in the comments below!