Microsoft unveils Xbox Music

The service, expected to compete against the likes of iTunes and Spotify, will make music tracks available on the console as well as Windows 8 devices.

Xbox Music shown off at E3. James Martin/CNET

Microsoft has unveiled a revamped music service, called Xbox Music, as it looks to better compete against the likes of Apple's iTunes, Pandora, and Spotify.

The company unveiled the service as part of its press conference at the E3 gaming event today. Microsoft said the service will include 30 million tracks available on the Xbox, as well as Windows 8 devices such as PCs and tablets.

The announcement is part of Microsoft's effort to turn the Xbox video game console into the entertainment hub of the home. It also likely signals the death of its Zune Music service, with the company all but completely abandoning the music player.

The service, which CNET first reported on , could give the music labels another high-profile distribution channel. While the Zune never made much of an impact with consumers, the Xbox already comes with a large installed base of users.

The service is also expected to work with phones as well.

Microsoft is following the path of Sony, which has also brought music to many devices, including the PlayStation and multiple mobile devices.

About the author

Roger Cheng is the executive editor in charge of breaking news for CNET News. Prior to this, he was on the telecommunications beat and wrote for Dow Jones Newswires and The Wall Street Journal for nearly a decade. He's a devoted Trojan alum and Los Angeles Lakers fan.

 

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