Samsung launches Music Hub in US

Aug 01, 2012 by RYAN NAKASHIMA

Samsung launched its Music Hub service in the U.S. on Tuesday. It's an effort to capture some of the buzz around Spotify with a feature that combines a cloud music locker, unlimited song streaming, a radio player and a music store.

All that costs $10 a month, although song purchases are charged separately. The catch: you need a Samsung Galaxy S III phone to use it.

The U.S. launch comes with a 30-day free trial period. Hub was introduced in Germany, France, Spain, Italy and Britain in May.

The service offers covers a range of services not available now from a single provider.

Apple Inc. sells songs on iTunes for up to $1.29 each and copies or matches songs on your computer in a virtual locker on distant for $25 a year.

Sweden's Spotify gives you on-demand access to millions of tracks for $10 a month from mobile devices, and provides a free that streams songs in certain genres.

Music Hub does all of that in a single app.

"We purposely are trying to blur the line, whether it's music from radio or catalog or your music," said Daren Tsui, chief executive of mSpot, a digital music company that Samsung acquired in May to create Music Hub. "Honestly, where it comes from is less relevant especially if it's a single plan. What you want is a holistic music experience at the end of the day."

Having the ability to buy music and store it in a locker for mobile playback might seem redundant if you can access millions of tracks from mobile devices for a monthly fee. But some artists keep their material off of subscription music plans. For instance, The Beatles' music is sold in digital form only on iTunes, and you won't find classics like "Here Comes the Sun" on subscription services.

So people who have collected the Fab Four's music over the years would have to save the digital files to their hard drive, download a Music Hub application that uploads them to the cloud and then stream or download them to the Galaxy S III phone. The files could also be transferred from computer to phone with a USB cable.

T.J. Kang, senior vice president of Samsung's media services, said that while matching Music Hub's features might cost more through a patchwork of other services, Samsung won't be losing money because of its arrangement with cellphone carriers and music companies.

"We basically are doing it to make our device more competitive by providing the best experience," Kang said.

Samsung wouldn't say how many people have signed up for Music Hub.

The company is embroiled in a legal battle with Apple Inc., which accuses Samsung of copying the design of the iPhone in its Galaxy line of phones. A trial involving the world's two largest makers of mobile phones began Tuesday in San Jose, California.

Last week research firm IDC said Electronics Co. extended its lead over Apple in mobile phones, shipping 50.2 million units worldwide in the April-June quarter, compared to 26 million for Apple.

Explore further: Google to help boost Greece's tourism industry

3.5 /5 (2 votes)
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Samsung buys music-movie streaming firm mSpot

May 10, 2012

Samsung Electronics announced it is buying mSpot to take advantage of the Silicon Valley company's prowess at streaming music and films to smartphones or tablet computers.

Sony's Music Unlimited comes to Android

Jun 16, 2011

Sony has released an app making its Music Unlimited online streaming available on smartphones running Google's Android system, amid growing competition from Amazon and Apple in cloud-based services.

Spotify doesn't quite hit the spot

Sep 16, 2011

Subscription services have been touted as the future of music for the past decade. But at least in this country, they've never taken off.

Recommended for you

Google to help boost Greece's tourism industry

5 hours ago

Internet giant Google will offer management courses to 3,000 tourism businesses on the island of Crete as part of an initiative to promote the sector in Greece, industry union Sete said on Thursday.

Music site SoundCloud to start paying artists

11 hours ago

SoundCloud said Thursday that it will start paying artists and record companies whose music is played on the popular streaming site, a move that will bring it in line with competitors such as YouTube and Spotify.

Facebook awards 'Internet Defense Prize'

20 hours ago

Facebook awarded a $50,000 Internet Defense Prize to a pair of German researchers with a seemingly viable approach to detecting vulnerabilities in Web applications.

Twitter tries to block images of Foley killing

Aug 20, 2014

Twitter and some other social media outlets are trying to block the spread of gruesome images of the beheading of journalist James Foley by Islamic State militants, while a movement to deny his killers publicity ...

User comments : 0