Groove Music in Windows 10
|Opened||October 16, 2012as Xbox Music|
|Discontinued||December 31, 2017|
Paid unlimited streaming in 22 countries|
18 million+ tracks (US);|
50 million+ tracks (globally)
|Preview||30 second previews of songs are available for free|
|Burning/copying||Yes (With Music Pass)|
|Website||Archived official website at the Wayback Machine (archive index)|
Groove Music (formerly Xbox Music and Zune Music, and also known as Microsoft Groove) is a digital music streaming service developed by Microsoft that offered music streaming through subscription or purchase through the Windows Store. The service was web-based and also available via applications for the Microsoft Windows and Xbox product lines, as well as Android and iOS. The Groove catalogue has over 50 million tracks.
Groove Music was officially discontinued on December 31, 2017 after Microsoft announced on October 2, 2017 that it would be shutting down the service by the end of the year.
Microsoft had previously ventured into music services with its Zune brand. The Zune Music Marketplace included 11 million tracks. The line of Zune players and Zune music store were somewhat unsuccessful, and the brand was largely discontinued at the beginning of the 2010s, although it continued to exist on different devices and the Zune Music Pass offered unlimited access to songs for US$9.99 per month.
Meanwhile, Microsoft had been emphasizing the strength of its Xbox brand because of its appeal to consumers. It had been expanding the multimedia services available through its Xbox Live to include services such as a video store and online game marketplace. It decided to introduce a new music service to build upon these existing features.
On July 6, 2015, Microsoft announced the re-branding of Xbox Music as Groove to tie in with the impending release of Windows 10. The new brand utilizes the Microsoft-owned "Groove" trademark formerly used for the unrelated product Microsoft Office Groove (now OneDrive for Business). Joe Belfiore explained that the re-branding was intended to disassociate the service from the Xbox product line, making it more inclusive to non-Xbox platforms.
Microsoft announced on October 2, 2017, that it would shut down the Groove Music Pass streaming service and remove all music for purchase from the Windows Store by December 31, 2017. Microsoft partnered with Spotify to allow customers to transition their music collection and playlists to the Spotify service. After December 31, 2017 the Groove apps would only play downloaded music stored in customers' local or personal cloud storage locations.
On May 31, 2018, Microsoft announced in a support document  that Groove Music apps are being discontinued on iOS and Android on June 1, 2018. On December 1, 2018, the Groove Music iOS and Android apps will be retired.
Groove Music Pass is a discontinued subscription-based service allowing unlimited streaming of the service's catalog. An advertising-supported streaming tier was previously available, but discontinued effective December 1, 2014. Music can also be purchased directly from Windows Store.
Users' purchased music, and playlists consisting of songs available on the service can be synced through OneDrive and accessed from multiple devices. Songs in a user's local library on a Windows 8.1 PC can be matched and made available to other devices if available on Groove Music Pass. Uploading of non-Groove music will also become available on Windows 10.
Windows 10's Anniversary Update allows users to hide features that require a Groove Music Pass from the interface.
Groove Music Pass
Groove Music Pass (formerly Xbox Music Pass and Zune Music Pass) is a discontinued pay subscription service that allowed users to listen to their subscription music on any device with the service installed. The pricing in US includes monthly and annual subscriptions. A one-month trial offer is available, but those who previously tried the Zune Music Pass subscription prior to the rebranding are ineligible for this offer.
On October 2, 2017, Microsoft announced the discontinuation of the Groove Music Pass service effective December 31, 2017. Existing subscribers will be refunded, and Microsoft has begun promoting Spotify as an alternative by allowing saved playlists to be migrated to the service.
Groove Music lets users create a collection of songs and playlists that roam through the cloud on all the supported devices. The songs can be added from the Groove Music Store or matched (within the Groove Music Catalog) to songs either saved locally on the user's machine or uploaded to the user's OneDrive account for the country the user is in.
APIs for developers
Countries where Groove was available included:
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- Official website (Archive)