Google Play Music launches in India, undercuts Apple Music

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India iPhone sales
Apple has been working to grow its brand in India.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

India is one of the next big markets for tech companies, and Google just threw down the gauntlet against Apple by undercutting Apple Music with its own Google Play music subscription service.

While Apple Music charges 120 rupees per month (around $2), Google is charging just 99 rupees ($1.50) for tis own service — with a discounted rate of 89 rupees for the first 45 days. In the U.S., both Google Play Music and Apple Music charge $9.99 per month.

Apple traditionally hasn’t cared much about price competitiveness, which has helped it avoid being trapped in the same “race to the bottom” that has negatively impacted other OEMs. With that said, in India it has showed that it’s willing to significantly lower its price to enter a developing market — hence the decision to charge 80 percent less for Apple Music than it does in the U.S.

Apple has also recently been pushing for permission to import and sell refurbished iPhones in India as a way of getting its handsets into more people’s hands. According to a recent forecast by IDC, increasing phone sales in India is one of the ways Apple will drive continued growth in its iPhone business — after the market has started to reach saturation point in the U.S., Western Europe, and China.

In addition to the lower price point, Google has been hyping the degree of localization it has done for Google Play Music in India. This includes offering music across various languages including Hindi, Kannada, Tamil, Telugu, Western, Bengali, Bhojpuri, Gujarati, Malayalam, Marathi, Punjabi, Tamil, and Telugu.

Will Apple drop the price of Apple Music even further to compete with Google? Will it try and offer some tantalizing exclusives to justify the difference in price? We guess we’ll have to wait and see.

Source: Economic Times