Amazon is reportedly close to launching its own standalone music streaming service, one that would be separate from the selection of music offered by its Prime subscription bundle. Reuters says the online giant is aiming to launch a service that would compete with the likes of Spotify and Apple Music, two of the industry’s largest options on the market.
While Amazon’s aim is to go up against other streaming options, Reuters says the company’s main goal hope is to spur interest in the Echo, which has become a surprise hit over the past several months. With Google Home set for a fall release, it would seem Amazon is feeling threatened by Google’s Echo competitor, which is similar to Amazon’s device but is capable of answering follow-up questions, a key differentiator between the two smart home devices.
There have been rumors about Amazon working on more advanced Echo devices, which would make for nice companions to whatever service the company has in store. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Amazon offer an extended free trial to Echo buyers, or even Fire tablet buyers, sweetening the deal as it looks to muscle into a crowded and competitive market.
While it’s unlikely Amazon’s music service will make a significant dent in the likes of Spotify or Apple Music, the company could potentially reach customers who don’t already subscribe to a music service. Amazon’s site is one of the most visited on the internet, giving the company a huge platform to advertise on.
Previously, Amazon spun off its Prime Video service into a standalone option, something that’s already part of the company’s annual Prime subscription bundle; Prime also includes unlimited photo uploads, free two-day shipping, and more.
It’s unclear what Amazon has planned for those who currently subscribe to Prime. Will the standalone music option be included at no charge? Will Prime subscribers be expected to pay an additional fee?