Amazon has announced Cloud Player licensing agreements that bring significant updates to Amazon Cloud Player. The agreements are with Sony Music Entertainment, EMI Music, Universal Music Group, Warner Music Group, and more than 150 independent distributors, aggregators and music publishers. Amazon’s scan and match technology gives customers a fast and easy way to get all of their music from their computers to the cloud. Cloud Player customers can then enjoy their music on their favorite devices, including Kindle Fire, iPhone, iPod Touch, Android devices and any web browser, and soon, Roku streaming players and Sonos home entertainment systems.
The move increases competition with Apple, which introduced a scan-and-match cloud storage offering for music, called iTunes Match, in 2011. This is the latest example of Amazon encroaching on Apple’s turf. Last year, the world’s largest Internet retailer began selling its own tablet computer, the Kindle Fire, as a smaller, cheaper alternative to the iPad.
New Cloud Player features include:
- Amazon MP3 purchases — including music that customers purchased in the past — are automatically saved to Cloud Player, which means that customers have a secure backup copy of the music they buy from Amazon, free of charge.
- Amazon scans customers’ iTunes and Windows Media Player libraries and matches the songs on their computers to Amazon’s 20 million song catalog. All matched songs – even music purchased from iTunes or ripped from CDs – are instantly made available in Cloud Player and are upgraded for free to high-quality 256 Kbps audio. Music that customers have already uploaded to Cloud Player also will be upgraded.
- Any customer with a Kindle Fire, Android device, iPhone, iPod touch, or any web browser — and soon, a Roku streaming player or Sonos home entertainment system — can play their music anywhere.