Google is in talks with European-based streaming music service Spotify, according to a report today on CNET. Google has been rumored to be working on launching a streaming music service of its own for years now, with clamor over the potential service reaching a peak last summer when Big G was said to have a service near ready for launch last fall. That rumor did not, however, come true.
Spotify has had a similar past, but perhaps this sort of deal could get both companies what they really want - a piece of the musical pie in the U.S.
Last year, we wrote that Spotify was preparing for a U.S. launch by Q3. Q3 came and went, as did the expected Fall launch date for Google. Again last January, word circulated that Spotify was finally on its way, with some saying the company had managed to ink a deal with Sony, but still the service eludes American soil.
Now, CNET's Greg Sandoval reports that, according to "a source with knowledge of the talks, Google has told the labels that it has begun discussions with Spotify in recent weeks, though no agreement is in place."
The mobile streaming music market isn't an empty one, of course. Recommendation services like Slacker Radio and Pandora offer free streaming music, though at the expense of control. Other services, like MOG, Napster and Rdio provide full desktop and mobile streaming music experiences, but at $5 to $10 per month. This isn't to say that either Google or Apple couldn't shove them aside and make some waves in the music market if they found a way in.
As Sandoval points out, "The issue of Google or Apple being first is sort of moot now. Amazon beat them both."
Both, however, have something that Amazon doesn't - a mobile operating system and ecosystem of their very own.