Australia Is Getting Xbox Music, So How Much Is It?

Microsoft just announced that it plans to go after Spotify where it lives: your ears. It has announced a new streaming service for block-rocking tunes called Xbox Music and it will let you stream music from Microsoft's cloud for free, provided you have the right device.

Xbox Music is available across the Xbox 360, Windows 8, Windows RT and Windows Phone 8. If you're rocking Windows 8 or RT, you'll be able to stream music for free. Microsoft is promising "millions of songs" and unlimited playlists for you lucky ducks. Streaming will be "limited" after six months though. What those limits are, we don't know yet.

If you're anywhere other than on Windows, though, you'll have to pay for the service from day dot.

Xbox 360 and Windows Phone 8 users will have to pay $11.99 per month for an Xbox Music Pass which gives them access to the service. That includes the millions of songs Windows users will get, as well as the option for unlimited playlists, but on top of that, Xbox 360 users get tens of thousands of music videos, too. You know, for when you want to relive the glory days of Video Hits in your lounge room.

Does anyone think it strange that the device the service is named after isn't the one that's going to be free? Just sayin'.

Comparatively, Xbox Music is priced quite competitively in the Australian market. It's exactly the same price as Spotify per month and it beats out the top Web + Mobile tier of Rdio by a whole $0.91.

Whether you're subscribed or not, you'll be able to access the Xbox Music Store, which lets you buy and download songs to your local device and store them on whichever device you like. Going forward, Microsoft plans to add "social functionality" to Xbox Music so you can share music with your friends.

Global roll-out starts tomorrow, but Australia won't get it until Windows 8 launch day on October 26.


    "Streaming will be “limited” after six months though. What those limits are, we don’t know yet."

    Quality research as usual. It's in the fine print on

    **Free streaming limited to 10/hours month after 6 months; unlimited with paid subscription.

    Last edited 15/10/12 4:43 pm

      That's a fair deal, I reckon. I barely listen to that much music per month as it is - my music library is comparatively small. But if I could stream 10 hours for free, I'd be happy to use the service to discover or explore new (to me - I'm typically a few years behind the trendline!) music and while I'm there, perhaps buy an album or two.

        Spotify has spoiled the debate because it's comprehensively adequate as a premium and free music streaming service,

        to the point that it seems to be worth a monthly sub to have access to DRM'd music offline, their akward to use online playlists, and a somewhat akward, bloaty interface, on PC these things are annoying,

        on consoles like the XBOX360 and PS3, irritating bloated interfaces are normal, sadistic DRM is enjoyed, and clicking through a menu 19 times to transfer 1 song into a playlist is really efficient,

        Microsoft will probably really enjoy the cash from this. Spotify is a 4 star service, but, however much you like either product, Microsoft, can't really do 5 star. it can do 3 stars, it might forget a few things, it might put in some draconian features that seem infantile, like broadcasting song choices on msn messenger, or, it might be enough to make them bring back the Zune.

        All i can think is, it's really, really similar to the PS3's Sony-BMG VidZone from a few years ago, that nobody uses.

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