Microsoft continues to shell out new innovations. In addition to the imminent arrival of Windows 8 and the Surface tablet, several products will launch that are aimed towards streamlining services offered by Microsoft, among which stands out Xbox Music, its new online music service.

Xbox Music can be considered as the successor to the failed Microsoft Zune, and will attempt to compete with other similar services like Apple’s iTunes or Spotify.

Microsoft’s new service has been available since the 16th of October for Xbox 360 consoles in North America, and within a few weeks it will come to consoles and computers throughout the rest of the world along with the release of Windows 8, the Surface, and the new smart phones running Windows Phone 8. In addition, it will be available next year for other smart phone families—for both iOS and Android.

Xbox Music has the advantage of starting with a catalog of 30 million available songs and 70,000 music videos, exceeding the 26 million titles that iTunes offers, the 15 million from Spotify, and the 11 million from Zune.

With Xbox Music, you can stream music for free with a system that is financed by the ads included in the playback. This service will make enjoying music so simple that all you have to do is search for the song by its title or the artist and press Play.

However, there is an ad-free version—Xbox Music Pass—that allows you to listen to limitless music without advertisements from the Xbox Music catalog for only $10 a month.

On the other hand, Microsoft’s online music service will essentially include a cloud storage system based on Microsoft SkyDrive, in addition to social features on the Social Music platform and tools for sharing your favorite music with your friends.

It should be noted that this online music service from Microsoft, although multi-platform, was released using the name of the videogame console for the simple reason that there have been 67 million consoles sold by the guys at Redmond, which makes it a great way to introduce and spread the news of Xbox Music.

Xbox Music, Microsoft tries again to leave a mark in the online music market with a service that, just like its competitors, hopes to reinvent and revitalize the way we consume music content and thus fight against the piracy that has battered it so much in recent years.

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