updated 10:55 pm EDT, Tue April 9, 2013
Individual marketplaces will reserve space for local artists
In a posting earlier today by Google, the company revealed that it is expanding its Google Music service to seven additional countries. The posting declared that the service is now available in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Luxembourg, Ireland, New Zealand, and Portugal. In addition to the mainstream music coverage, Google is also hosting a Google Play artist hub customized for the country allowing local bands to sell music directly to listeners.
The Google Music streaming service was previously available in France, Germany, Italy, Portugal, Spain, and the United States. All told, the service offers 13 million tracks in the store, with users able to store up to 20,000 songs for streaming to an Android device on Google Play for free.
Amazon and Apple both offer similar services that can hold music collections, though at a cost. Amazon does offer a free version, but it is capped at 250 tracks, forcing users to pay $25 per year to store up to 250,000 tracks. Apple's offering, at a similar cost to Amazon, can store up to 25,000 non-iTunes songs, plus any songs the user purchased from iTunes.