Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Facebook to Offer Free Online Music to Rival Apple's iTunes

cloud MusicFacebook's 750 million users will soon be able to listen to music through the site - sharing songs in the same way that users currently share videos, television programs, Hollywood films and news links.

It's a move that could put Facebook in direct competition with Apple's iTunes service - and looks certain to cement the site's position ahead of Google as the UK's most popular web destination.

News of the new feature is expected to be unveiled at this month's 'f8' conference on September 22 in San Francisco, an annual event held by Facebook to show off new 'apps' and technologies.

Music services partnered with the site are expected to allow Facebook users to listen to libraries of millions of songs directly via the site, without having to install special software on their PCs. Facebook users will be able to listen to huge libraries music directly from PCs in their workplace for the first time.

It also seems highly likely that at least some of the music available via the site will be entirely free - and that users will be able to buy music via the site, a move that pitches Facebook head-on against Apple's iTunes.

'Many of the most popular music services around the world are integrated with Facebook, and we're constantly talking to our partners about ways to improve this,' said a Facebook spokesman, although the company declined to provide further details of any upcoming services.

It's thought that one of the likeliest candidates to partner with Facebook is Spotify, a Swedish music service used by 10 million people worldwide, and highly popular in the UK. Spotify offers a library of 15 million songs free - and is seen as a serious challenger to Apple's iTunes.

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