updated 05:10 pm EDT, Tue July 31, 2012
New 256Kbps bitrate, separated from Cloud Drive storage
The Amazon Cloud Player has received some upgrades, along with some new licensing agreements. A new scan-and-match service covering iTunes and Windows Media Player libraries matches songs to Amazon's 20 million track catalog, and makes them available to the Cloud Player app (Google Play, App Store) at a new 256Kbps bitrate at no extra charge, including tracks that have already been uploaded to the service.
Roku players and Sonos home entertainment systems will soon see the service and its new higher bitrate. Tracks bought through the Amazon MP3 Store will also automatically appear in the Player, with previous purchases from the store added at no further cost. New licensing agreements have been secured with Sony Music Entertainment, EMI Music, Universal Music Group, and Warner Music Group, in order for these upgrades to take place.
The subscription service charge remains at $25 per year to store 250,000 music tracks, and the free tier continues to allow 250 song imports. Amazon-purchased MP3s continue to be discounted from the storage limits. Cloud Drive has been separated from Cloud Player, meaning that previously stored music that would have counted towards its storage limits will no longer do so.