Amazon has launched a cloud based music player, getting the drop on Apple and Google, in the United States. While cloud based music services have been around for a while, this marks the first foray into the market by a major player.
Users can sign up for a free account and receive 5 Gb of free storage with the option of paying for more space. The Cloud Player is currently only available through web browsers and mobile devices running Google Android.
bbc.com - Commenting on the launch, Amazon's vice president of movies and music, Bill Carr said: "Our customers have told us they don't want to download music to their work computers or phones because they find it hard to move music around to different devices."
The service has been confined to the US because of copyright issues, in particular the tricky subject of format shifting.
bbc.com - Making online copies of tracks is known as format shifting. While the practice may violate copyright, in the US, it is generally defensible under the principle of fair usage.The same rules do not apply in the UK - meaning, for example, it is technically a breach of copyright law to copy music from a CD onto an MP3 player.
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