Comparison of online music lockers
This is a comparison of online music storage services (Cloud Music Services), Internet services that allow uploads of personally owned or licensed music to the cloud for listening on multiple devices.
There are currently three large services—Amazon Music, Apple's iTunes Match, and Google Play Music—each incorporating an online music store (see comparison), with purchased songs from the associated music store not counting toward storage limits. Other than additional storage space, the main additional feature provided with an annual fee by Amazon.com and Apple is "scan-and-match", which examines music files on a computer and adds a copy of matched tracks to the user's music locker without having to upload the files. Google provides both a large amount of storage space and the scan-and-match feature at no cost.
Amazon was the first of the currently significant players to launch their cloud music locker service in late March 2011. Amazon Music launched without obtaining any new music streaming licenses, which upset the major record labels. Google launched their service less than a month and a half later, also without obtaining any new licenses. Apple negotiated with the major record labels for a new license before launching their service six months after Google's. Amazon and Google eventually negotiated licenses before launching their scan-and-match features.
For streaming services where a person is unable to upload their own music, but is limited to music provided by the service, such as Pandora Radio and Spotify, see Comparison of on-demand streaming music services. See that article also for information on subscription streaming services provided by four of the companies below (Google Play Music All Access, Apple's iTunes Radio, Amazon's Prime Music, and Microsoft's Groove Music Pass).
Major differences between the services are Google offering scan-and-match and a large amount of storage as no-cost features, whereas others usually offer limited or no storage space for free and scan and match only with an annual fee. For users with extremely large libraries, Amazon offers the most storage space for a reasonable annual fee.
|Amazon Music||iTunes Match||Google Play Music||Loop Music Cloud Storage + Vox (software)||Groove Music + OneDrive||Style Jukebox||iBroadcast|
|Owner:||Amazon.com, Inc.||Apple Inc.||Google Inc.||Coppertino Inc.||Microsoft Corp.||Digital Geek Ltd.|
|Launch date:||2011-03-29||2011-10-12||2011-05-10 (beta)||2015-04-15 ||2015-03-18||2012-09-05|
|Windows player:||Yes||Yes||Chrome||No||Yes||Yes||Any Browser|
|Windows Phone player:||No||No||No||No||Yes||Yes||Not Sure|
|Other listening platforms:||Fire TV, Sonos,
Roku, Samsung TVs, Amazon Echo and Dot
|Apple TV, other AirPlay||Android TV, Apple TV, other AirPlay, Chromecast, Sonos||macOS, Apple TV via AirPlay, Chromecast, Sonos||Xbox One, Xbox 360||Via AirPlay, Qualcomm AllPlay, Chromecast|
|Free space:[a]||250 files||None||50,000 files||Unlimited Uploads & Playback (2 weeks trial period)||5 GB||10 GB 30 days trial||Unlimited Uploads & Playback|
|Upload software:||Windows, OS X||Windows, OS X||Windows, OS X, Linux, Web Upload||Web Upload, VOX Player for Mac||Windows, OS X, Web Upload,
Windows Phone, iOS, Android
|Windows, OS X, Web Upload and Automatic
Import from Dropbox, OneDrive and Google Drive
|Any Browser, Windows|
|Filetypes uploaded:||MP3 and AAC||MP3 and AAC||MP3||FLAC, MP3, AAC, M4A, WAV, OGG, AIFF, WMA, APE, ALAC||MP3, AAC, WMA||MP3, AAC, OGG, WMA, M4A, WAV, APE, AIFF, FLAC, ALAC||MP3, AAC, OGG, FLAC, PCM, MKA|
|Filetypes transcoded:||None||Transcoded to 256 kbit/s AAC:
ALAC, WAV, AIFF
|Transcoded to 320 kbit/s MP3:
AAC, ALAC, FLAC,[b] WMA,[c] Ogg
|None||None||None on upload|
|Maximum file size:||100 MB||200 MB or 2 hours||300 MB||No limit||10 GB||1 GB|
|Premium service name:||Cloud Player Premium||iTunes Match||None storage related||Loop Music Cloud Storage||Additional OneDrive storage||Style Jukebox Pro||Entirely Free (Premium Features TBA)|
|Premium service features:||Match/import up to 250,000 files||Match/import up to 100,000 files[d]||Matching included in basic features||Unlimited Storage and Playback||N/A||Upload 2 TB of music
24bit/192kHz High-Resolution Audio Playback
|Premium annual cost:||$24.99 (US), £21.99 (UK)||$24.99 (US), £21.99 (UK),
€24.99 (FR), $39.99 (AU)
|None||$15.99 (per month), $131.88 (per year)||N/A||$4.99 for 10 GB, $29.99 for 100 GB, $99.99 for 1 TB||TBA|
|Matchable file types:||MP3, AAC, AIFF, ALAC,
WAV, FLAC, Ogg, WMA
|MP3, AAC, AIFF, ALAC,
|MP3, AAC, ALAC, FLAC, Ogg, WMA||No matching feature||No matching feature||No matching feature|
|Result for matched song:||256 kbit/s VBR MP3||256 kbit/s AAC||320 kbit/s CBR MP3||No matching feature||No matching feature||No matching feature||No matching feature|
|Premium service countries:||US, UK, DE, FR||117||63||Worldwide||22||Worldwide|
- Purchased music files from associated music store do not count toward space limits.
- Google Play Music transcoding of FLAC to MP3 only supported with 16 and 24-bit stereo or mono FLAC.
- Google Play Music only supports WMA transcoding on Windows with Music Manager.
- In the United States and Australia, iTunes Match also gets you ad-free iTunes Radio listening.
Former or defunct services
- My.MP3.com started in January 2000, fought major record labels in UMG v. MP3.com, and the service was discontinued by a new owner.
- MP3tunes started in late 2005, fought major record labels in Capitol Records, Inc. v. MP3Tunes, LLC, and closed in 2012 after filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
- Lala started in 2006, was purchased by Apple, and shut down on May 31, 2010.
- mSpot Music started in May 2010, was purchased by Samsung, and shut down on October 15, 2012.
- Best Buy Music Cloud debuted in June 2011 to unfavourable reviews.
- Mougg started in 2010, renamed to Mashup in 2012, the domain ceased to function in December 2012. In April 2013, the service returned to its original name.
- Ubuntu One only included music features (web and mobile app playback, 20 GB storage) with the paid plan. The service was shut down on 1 June 2014.
- Samsung Music Hub is only available for a few Samsung devices. Samsung Music Hub was retired on 1 July 2014.
- Cloud Music Comparison: What’s the Best Service for Streaming Your Library Everywhere?, Lifehacker, 15 June 2011
- Google Music, iTunes Match, and Amazon Cloud Drive: Digital Music Services Comparison, PC World, 17 November 2011
- Amazon faces backlash over "music locker" service, Reuters, Phil Wahba and Paul Thomasch, Mar 29, 2011
- Unlicensed: Are Google Music and Amazon Cloud Player illegal?, Ars Technica, July 4, 2011
- Importing Music into Cloud Player, Amazon Help
- Google Music and Amazon Cloud Player take on iTunes Match. Who wins?, Ars Technica, January 17, 2013
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of iTunes Match
- Amazon launches Cloud Player music locker service, Los Angeles Times, 2011-03-29
- Google Launches 'Music Beta,' a Streaming Cloud Service for Tunes, Wired News, 2011-05-10
- Coppertino Launches New LOOP Music Locker, MacRumors, 2015-04-15
- Xbox Music can now play music stored in OneDrive, The Verge, 2015-03-18
- System requirements and country availability, Google Play Help
- Style Jukebox's iOS and Web apps play your hi-def music library from the cloud, The Next Web
- Using Amazon Cloud Player for Android, Amazon Help
- Amazon Music for Android, Amazon.com
- Amazon Cloud Player for iOS hands-on: the war for your music heats up, The Verge, 12 June 2012
- Amazon Music for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch, Amazon.com
- Google Play Music arrives for iOS, CNET,November 15, 2013
- Vox Plays Any Music File on iOS, Streams Music from a New Music Locker, CNET,April 15, 2015
- Register Your Sonos Device with Amazon Music, Amazon Help
- Amazon Cloud Player coming soon to Roku, 31 July 2012, Roku Blog
- Amazon Cloud Player on Roku, Amazon.com Help
- Play. Amplified. Introducing Google Play and Sonos
- Play Lossless with Sonos via VOX
- "Qualcomm Expands AllPlay Smart Media Platform Reach, Working with Hardware and Service Companies to Launch New AllPlay-powered Devices and Support from Additional Streaming Audio Services | Qualcomm". Qualcomm. Retrieved 2015-12-06.
- iCloud storage plan overview, Apple.com
- About Music on Google Play, Google.com
- Install the Google Play Music Manager, Google Play Help
- Google Play Music finally lets you upload songs through the browser, The Verge
- Install Style Jukebox Manager for Mac
- Style Jukebox’s iOS and Web apps play your hi-def music library from the cloud, The Next Web
- Introducing Style Jukebox Pro, Medium
- About Importer File Formats, Amazon Help
- Google Play Music supported file types, Google Play Help
- iTunes Store: Subscribing to iTunes Match, Apple.com
- Storage limits, Google Play Help
- OneDrive's file size limit upped to 10GB, syncing speeds tripled, PC World, Sep 11, 2014
- Updated Amazon Cloud Player Includes New Scan and Match Technology, Free Audio Quality Upgrades, and More, press release
- Amazon Updates Cloud Player: Scan & Match Imports, 256 Kbps Audio Upgrades, Premium Accounts, TechCrunch
- iTunes Match, Apple.com
- "Style Jukebox Plans". www.stylejukebox.com. Retrieved 2015-12-06.
- Apple support page showing 100,000 track limit
- Google Music's Free Scan and Match Feature Comes to the U.S.
- About Matched Music, Amazon.com
- Google Play Music enables scan and match in Europe ahead of US launch, The Verge
- Matching feature on the Google Play Music Manager, Google Play Help
- Amazon announces cloud player in the UK, The Telegraph
- Amazon Cloud Player launches in the UK, France and Germany, Music Alley, September 18th, 2012
- iTunes in the Cloud and iTunes Match Availability, Apple Support
- Our new music matching feature gets your songs into your online music library on Google Play much faster. We’ll scan your collection and quickly rebuild it in the cloud - all for free., Google Play on Google+, 18 Dec 2012
- Country availability for apps & digital content
- Amazon AutoRip: How the labels held back progress for 14 years, Ars Technica, January 11, 2013
- Music labels force pioneering MP3tunes into bankruptcy, Ars Technica, May 14, 2012
- mSpot New Music Cloud Service, May 19, 2010
- Samsung boosts its mobile ecosystem with mSpot purchase, GigaOM, May 9, 2012
- Best Buy's Music Cloud: Skip It, For Now, PCMag.com, June 22, 2011
- Review: Download Music From the Cloud, Rolling Stone, 7 December 2010
- Mougg: Another great option for streaming your music library, The Next Web, 29 November 2010
- Shutting down Ubuntu One file services, Cononical blog, 2 April 2014
- mSpot Music is closing on October 15, 2012, mSpot blog, 9/19/2012
- Samsung to retire Music Hub streaming service, CNet.com