Samsung Launches Music Service to Take on iTunes and Spotify

Samsung has launched its own music service which the Korean company is hoping will rival the biggest names in the business.

Through Music Hub, users will be able to purchase music from an online library of over 19 million tracks and will also have access to a subscription-based streaming service. Samsung’s new music platform also offers cloud storage so tracks can be played across a variety of devices.

Making sure there is no misunderstanding of the company’s intentions, senior vice president of Media Services for Samsung, TJ Kang, told tech site Pocket-lint: “We aren’t about niches. We want to have the largest catalogue. We want to be bigger than Apple.”

Setting out your stall in direct competition with iTunes is a bold move. Launched in 2001, Apple’s music service was a revolution in music retail and quickly became a big player in the music industry. Digital music services have been introduced by other internet giants since such as Google and Amazon, but none have matched the success that Apple managed to find with iTunes.

Others have come up with innovative ideas that provide subscription-based music streaming services, such as Spotify and Last.fm. These are based on a user paying a monthly fee (or using a free, advert-supported version) to gain access to a library of music rather than purchasing individual tracks.

Samsung’s Music Hub includes features from all of these platforms, working with both a pay-per-track model and a subscription service which, at £9.99 per month, is one penny cheaper than Spotify’s premium offering. As well as the enormous library that is available to Music Hub users there is the option to import any track that can’t be found on the service.

The cloud storage options which are made available make it easy to play a particular track through a variety of devices, the range of which reminds us that Samsung is more than just the world’s biggest producer of mobile phones. As well as being able to stream music through a browser-based version of Music Hub the manufacturer has made the service compatible with its Smart TV products and, incredibly, its range of fridges.

In his interview with Pocket Lint, TJ Kang also revealed that although the service will initially only be available on the Galaxy S III it is to be rolled out to earlier Samsung mobile devices such as the Galaxy S II and Galaxy Note at some point in the future. The company also has plans to launch Music Hub for other platforms like iOS, although Kang says that the service will perform best on Samsung devices as the manufacturer will be able to tailor the software to the particularities of its own hardware.

Where Music Hub differs from iTunes is that it doesn’t offer any device management functions beyond those that are music related and Samsung’s Kies is still a separate service altogether. Where it differs from Spotify is that it is available to PC and Mac users straight through a browser without downloading any software.

Although most of Music Hub’s features have already been seen elsewhere the Korean company has integrated them into one service which could well become a popular choice amongst mobile users, whether their phone is made by Samsung or not.

Leave a Reply