Best Buy introduces new Music Cloud service to get in on the fun and cash

Posted on Jun 22 2011 - 9:38am by Mike Wewerka

We’ve all heard the saying…”Build it and they will come…” perfect example is a Wal-Mart, we don’t need them, but if they build it, people will flock to it like sheep. Sorry, getting off topic, how about this saying “Build it first and the rest will copy!” Apparently this whole cloud storage “thingie” is catching on and big companies are trying to capitalize on it.

If a cloud storage system from Amazon, Google and Apple wasn’t enough, now big time electronics retailer, Best Buy, is getting in on the action. Their new service, called Music Cloud, is powered by Catch Media Inc’s Play Anywhere platform. So what exactly makes this service different enough or better, for you to care? Well you can upload you music to the Music Cloud, which doesn’t sound any different than Google or Amazon’s services, with the exception of it will allow you to stream that music to any device, iPhone, Android and even a thing called a Blackberry (sorry, couldn’t resist).

It will not feature the “Scan and Match” service that iCloud has, but that will save you from spending $25 bucks a year. Best Buy is going to offer an app on said platforms (iOS, Android and BlackBerry) that will connect your device to the Music Cloud. Within the app you’ll be able to stream music, manage your collection and even mark songs or playlists for offline listening. Of course all of this will need to work with a desktop program that will copy all of your music and playlists and put them on the cloud. Here is the only kink in the plan, you cannot transfer individual songs up to the Music Cloud. It  will only transfer music from your iTunes music folder, a move that Apple could put the proverbial “Kabosh” on and stop Best Buy in their tracks.

So how much is all of this wonderfulness? Well right now we don’t know exactly the specifics other than there is a free version and a paid version of $4 dollars a month for what Best Buy calls a “premium” account. What comes in each of these versions we don’t know. We  do know that free version will limit users to a 30-second listening window unless you pay up for the premium service. We’ll have to wait and see what the real nitty-gritty details will be before we can make final judgement.

As a beta tester for Google Music, since I use an Android phone, I don’t know if I’m going to be moving my music collection all over the place when these services go full steam ahead. The only reason I did Google’s was to get my 6GB of music off my phone. I did this simple because I wanted the space and barely listen to my music on the go. I have Pandora and my Sirius XM music apps for streaming so I really don’t need my collection. So honestly, for me, I’ll take whatever is free to store my music for occasional playback. I’m sure there are HUGE music buffs who want the best of the best…so with all these choices, who will you go with?