Apple iTunes users for some time now can subscribe to iTunes Match for $24.99 a year to automatically match their local music collection with Apple's entire library of songs. The service basically tries to match any song stored on the local system with songs that Apple is purchasing in the iTunes store. Matches are automatically made available online without the need to upload the files and often in superior (256 Kbit) quality.
Once songs have been matched, they can be played back on supported devices or downloaded to the computer again. I know a handful of users who used the service to replace - almost - their entire music library with higher quality versions that Apple has made available to them via iTunes Match.
And now it is Amazon that is introducing a scan and match feature for its Cloud Player. The service at the time of writing is only available to users from the United States though. Amazon introduced its cloud space offering last year at a time when several companies started to get into the market. Amazon users until now could upload their music collection to Amazon for use in the service's cloud player. Music purchases on Amazon were furthermore automatically added to the storage.
The new scan and match technology adds a feature to Cloud Player that eliminates the need to upload the majority of music to the cloud storage manually. Amazon will scan the collection automatically to match songs with its own store offering just like Apple does with iTunes Match. Cloud Player users get 250 free song matches, and 250,000 matches, that's is 225,000 more than Apple is offering, when they subscribe to the service for $24.99 per year.
What more? Songs are made available in 256 Kbps quality on all devices that Cloud Player is available for, which tops Apple's offering in this regard as Cloud Player is not only available on desktop computer systems but also for Android, Amazon's own Kindle devices, iOS and various other players.
Now, if Amazon would only offer their service for users from all over the world and not only the US. (via Caschy)
Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.