Amazon Planning Echo Music Subscription Service?

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Amazon is reportedly planning a subscription model for its music streaming service that would only function with its Echo smart speaker system, offering users access to its library of digital music for $5 (£3.80) a month.

According to Recode, Amazon is planning to launch the service in September but has yet to finalise deals with major music labels and publishers that it would need to ensure a competitive streaming catalogue.

The news comes a few months after rumours started to circulate that Amazon was planning on launching a music streaming service that would compete with Spotify, Apple Music and other similar platforms.

Amazon is supposedly continuing with these plans, with the standard platform costing $9.99 a month (the same as Spotify and Apple Music) and Echo owners getting access to the half-price version.

The pricing model would in theory both reward those Prime subscribers who have already paid out for an Echo connected speaker, and encourage others to buy the Echo, which can be used as a smart phone hub and enable voice-controlled purchases through Amazon.

The Echo has proved a relative success for Amazon, which has struggled to truly break into the hardware market with anything except its Kindle eReaders, and has had several high-profile flops such as its Fire Phone.

The $5-a-month Echo model would give Amazon a unique selling point for both the speaker and the streaming service. Most cheaper streaming models restrict listening in some fashion, providing something closer to a web-based radio station than a digital music player.

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