Report: Google Preps Rival To iTunes Music Service



The beat goes on in the emerging battle between Internet giant Google and Apple. The latest volley comes in the form of a report claiming the Mountain View, Calif. company is preparing an iTunes rival possibly called “Google Audio.”

Google has spent the “last several weeks securing content for the launch of the service from the major music labels,” claims TechCrunch, citing several unnamed sources.

Although the report believes launch of the new service is “imminent”, no time frame was provided.

Unlike a music service Google launched for only within China, the new service is expected to be available to U.S. consumers, one of the largest potential markets for downloading music. Also different: Google might be able to charge for the downloads, where in China (with nearly 100% music piracy) tunes are free. Google owns a little-used music search engine that could be enhanced with the ability to download and purchase tracks, according to the report.

[Via TechCrunch and Gizmodo]