I have created a Google Music Beta account. Here’s how it works: you upload your music to “the cloud” (Google’s servers), and you can listen to it with any device that has internet access (smartphone, laptop, tablet, etc.). If I want to listen to my music library on my laptop, then I log in to music.google.com with my Google username and password, and voila! my browser is now a music player:
Presently, you are limited to 20,000 songs, and you have to request an invitation from Google to participate. Once you receive your invitation, you install a small program that lets you choose which folder(s) of music on your computer’s hard drive to upload.
The drawback is that you have to actually own the songs to upload them, and uploading takes forever. I began the process 9 hours ago, and it’s uploaded only 215 songs! I’ll probably let it run in the evening and pause it during the day, because it really slows down any other internet activity I wish to do. Other than that, I think this is the future of music – you won’t own a hard copy of anything, and you will have access to your entire library courtesy of “the cloud”. For more information, and to request an invitation, go here.