Google Music, The King Maker?

Google just added music search and 15 minutes later I am hooked. (The rumors of Google Music had flared up back in August!)

The search engine helped me find really obscure artists, their biographies, discographies, latest news, and links to their websites. Of course, the search makes it super easy to find the music that is available for sale, either as an album or a single. I like the fact that Google is giving representation to even smaller retailers.

Google links to the eMusic, Rhapsody, MSN Music and other music e-tailers. (Though I did not see any links to Yahoo Music.) Regardless, a disproportionate number of singles/albums are linked to iTunes store. “Either way, Google doesn’t get a cut of any music sales — but they (of course) do make money on any related ads,” writes Mike over at Techdirt.

Perhaps, Google just might turn out to be the king maker in the digital music download space. Given Microsoft and Yahoo’s musical ambitions, it is fair to assume that Google could e get “closer” to Apple. But that’s a story for another day.

Google Vs Mercora

Google Music is not the first – Mercora has been offering music-related search for a while; but Google Music is definitely a more in-depth offering. For instance, Mercora has better way of showing information, but doesn’t have latest news links and you can buy music from MSN Music. However, if you are using a PC on the Mercora Networks, then you can listen to the music over its P2P radio network. You cannot preview music on Google Music as yet.

Another Google shortcoming, to paraphrase an old saying, has an interface only a mother would love. Search giant makes up for that shortcoming with ample goodies. I can see at some point in the future people plugging the Google Music Search into their recommendation tools like say, Music Strands, which incidentally just released their new software.

Google’s move into the music space comes at the right time. According to a survey by Ipsos-Insight, this holiday season nearly 22% respondents were looking to buy the lower storage music players like iPod Nano and iPod Shuffle, while 14% were going to be opting for higher capacity devices. What that means – they will soon be searching for music information. And what better place than Google Music!