Google Music, Google Music, an online music store and “free locker” for digital music, was rolled out to the public on Wednesday.
On Thursday, however, questions abounded as to whether the service will amount to simply a “me too” move, following Apple and Amazon’s well-worn trail through the digital-music forest, or a significant step toward making Google an e-music player.
And while much of the always ready-to-attack tech blogosphere was less than enthusiastic, it’s legitimate to ask whether that’s even the real question.
In a way, the product is just one more front in the battle between Android and Apple.
Away from the desktop, iTunes users must have an iPod, iPhone or other Apple device to play the music, movies and other content they download.
By selling more widely usable mp3s, Google Music will be viable across multiple devices. And, of course, Google would prefer you to choose a device running its Android operating system.
“In the end, this isn’t about helping Google ‘catch up to iTunes’ — it’s about filling the big, gaping, musical hole in Google’s mobile business,” Peter Kafka wrote for All Things D.