Google Play Music All Access hits some European territories with special launch price of £7.99/€7.99

Screenshot 2013-08-07 at 22.27.12

You! Hey you!

Do you like music?
Do you like the idea of being able to stream an unlimited number of a selection of millions of tracks to your internet connected devices in exchange for a monthly fee with a 30 day free trial before you start?
Do you like such services to force you to remain in a certain ecosystem due to a frustrating lack of platform agnosticism?
Do you think that you don’t give Google enough information about you and your habits already?
Do Spotify and Rdio not have enough letters in their names for you?

If you answered yes to a good proportion of these questions, you should try Google Play Music All Access! Launched in the States at Google I/O, the ridiculously named service (which I affectionately refer to as GPMAAAAAAAAAAA), has finally crossed over the Atlantic, and you can now sign up with a 30 day free trial in the following countries. Note: all are new today unless otherwise specified.

  • Australia (since July)
  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • France
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Luxembourg
  • New Zealand (since July)
  • Portugal
  • Spain
  • United Kingdom
  • United States (since forever)

This means that every country that has access to the Google Play Music locker service (with the sole exception of Germany (thanks, GEMA)) also gets the streaming service, which has been priced at £7.99/€7.99 for those who sign up before September 15th, at which point it will rise up to match its main competitors at £9.99/€9.99. I’ve had a few minutes with it and, at least in the UK, I can’t see a reason to pick it over Spotify, which offers the same holes in the streaming library but, most importantly, the true cross-platform accessibility that Google’s offering lacks. Hell, you can’t access All Access outside of the web app and Android yet. Still, those entrenched in Google’s ecosystem and those who like to, well, ‘fill the gaps’ with the music locker service may find GPMAAAAAAAAAAA to be the streaming service for them.

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Technophobia: The future of television

Technophobia is a column by James Hardy. Views expressed are not necessarily those of Digixav.

Recently, as services such as Hulu and Netflix have taken off, and as consumers gradually move over to online TV services, is there a future for the television? Admittedly Hulu hasn’t yet hopped the pond to make the service available in the UK, but I’m sure it will only be a matter of time.

I live in Hastings, where a certain John Logie Baird lived, he being the one famed for creating television in 1925. Television has come a long way since then. We have colour TV, for starters, hundreds of channels, and many thousands of shows.

The television is still very popular. 50 million are sold each year. The average North American has three TVs in their house.

I have noticed that I don’t watch as much telly as I used to. One service I find fantastic is TVCatchup, a site where you can watch live TV, with around a ten second delay.

I do like American TV. For instance, in my opinion Community is the best, funniest show on TV right now. Bar none. But living in the UK, I can’t get access to it. So I may or may not allegedly possibly maybe download it a little bit illegally from sites such as isohunt and the now defunct btjunkie. Ahem. I won’t provide links to them due to laws which are trying to be pushed through by certain governments, but there is a thing called Google.

I do find services like iPlayer to be very useful. For instance, when I’ve missed the latest episode of The Apprentice, which seems to be most weeks. Side note – why does Match of the Day never go up on iPlayer? And 4oD is good, but why do they stop you seeing things after 30 days from when they are broadcast? I’m still not sure if I’ve seen the last episode of Peep Show! And as for Demand 5…

I personally don’t have an account to Hulu, Lovefilm or anything like that. I have tried out Netflix at someone else’s house, and I have to say, I like it. I like being able to watch that many shows and films whenever I want. Of course, Netflix also do a delivery service, though not in Britain, probably due to competition from Lovefilm, but I reckon that will die out quite soon.

It’s nice having shows whenever, because it is unbearable waiting til Thursday for the next Community episode (or Friday when I can download the thing). But at the same time that’s part of the fun. I think it just shows how lazy we humans are getting. We want everything whenever we feel like it, we don’t won’t to have to wait. Is that a good thing?

At the moment, in the US the rate of people moving from TV to internet services like Netflix is less than 1% per year. It isn’t a massive change. Yet.

I think Netflix and Hulu need to get bigger and better before they will become massive. They need a larger selection of films and TV shows, and they need them quicker – as the series is happening, for instance.

Recently companies have started to produce smart TVs, where you can connect to the internet and get apps through them, but for me while they’re trying to make a television that can also do more, I think it is more like a computer that doubles as a television. With a bigger screen.

I think the humble TV will go on fighting for a while yet. It will take time to completely kill it off.

Some flies are too awesome for the wall. (I know it doesn’t really make sense, I just wanted to end with a Community quote.)

This article was originally published on Stuff Things Rants