Google Music Beta

Posted on Wednesday, May 18 2011 on 10:00 AM

A week ago today, Google launched Music Beta, giving Android users the opportunity to upload their music to Google's cloud servers and access it from other computers or Android smartphones. You'd need an invitation to get access to the service, and Google's been accepting requests since last Tuesday. Now those invites are finally heading out to interested users, allowing you to get started uploading your collection.

After accepting Google's terms, users who have received their invitations will be able to download the Google Music Manager and choose what parts of their music collection to upload. It was immediately clear that this really is very much a beta period for the service, as the UI wasn't very refined, cutting off some needed buttons (you can't tell from this screen, but it later becomes apparent they should be "Add folder" and "Remove folders").

Once you choose what tunes to import, the Music Manager will start uploading and transcoding your files if necessary (sorry, FLAC fans, but there's a 320kbps limit). The upload process went smoothly, and we were able to access our music, streaming to a smartphone straight away. We'll have to play around with it some more to see how we like it compared to Amazon's cloud service, but so far it delivers what Google's promised.

If you've applied for an invitation, check your inbox to see if yours is waiting for you already.


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