Google Offers Music Service in India

Google has introduced a free music search service in India that links users to legal music streams on partners' sites.

The service rolled out late Thursday is called Google Music Search (India) Labs. It allows users to search by artist, movie, album or song title.

Users are allowed to listen to streaming music online from the partner's site, and the service does not offer the facility of downloading music directly, Google said on the music site. Some of the partners may however offer music downloads, it added.

Google is offering the songs through online music sites such as in.com and Saavn.com, which offer music from a number of Indian labels.

Google India was not immediately available for comment on the new site.

The move by Google is expected to help combat piracy in the Indian music industry. Google Music Search (India) currently offers only Hindi songs.

Google Music Search (India) licenses meta-data of thousands of songs owned or licensed by partners to make them searchable on the Internet, Google said on the music website. Once the user searches and finds the music he wants, partners stream the music directly from their websites to the user's computer.

The copyright for the songs searchable on Google Music Search (India) is owned by the owners of the distinct components of each song. Google has tied up with partners that either own the copyright or have appropriate licenses from copyright owners allowing them to use their content, it said. In any case no music content is stored on Google systems, it added.

Google has described the music service as a lab product that is experimental and not guaranteed to make it onto Google.com.

"We're rolling this out as a labs product and look forward to your feedback so we can improve the offering," Google said on its India blog.

John Ribeiro covers outsourcing and general technology breaking news from India for The IDG News Service. Follow John on Twitter at @Johnribeiro. John's e-mail address is john_ribeiro@idg.com

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