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Digital Media

PlayStation spins free Spotify tunes on your TV

From the ashes of the Sony Music Unlimited streaming service comes the first way to listen to the free version of Spotify on TVs.

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Sony on Monday launched PlayStation Music to play tunes on the gaming console, joining forces with Spotify to make the free version of the streaming service work on TVs for the first time.

Previously, connected-TV devices -- whether gaming consoles or over-the-top boxes like Roku -- could only play music from Spotify with a full paid subscription, costing $9.99, £9.99 or AU$11.99 per month. The free, ad-supported tier of the service wasn't available.

PlayStation Music is a move by both Sony and Spotify to get an edge in their own market battles. With entertainment increasingly delivered over the Internet, companies like Sony are facing off with the likes of Microsoft and Apple to be the one that rules the living room. PlayStation Music follows another Sony stab on this front: the rollout of PlayStation Vue earlier this month, a service that is one of the first to deliver multiple channels of live TV online.

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Sony scrapped Sony Music Unlimited, its own attempt in a streaming service, to join forces with Spotify. Spotify

For Spotify, which is the biggest on-demand music streamer by users, being the exclusive streaming service on PlayStation consoles represents another leg up in the race with Apple's Beats, Rdio and others to become the standard for online music play.

Sony has a rocky track record with music on PlayStation. Spotify-powered PlayStation Music replaces Sony Music Unlimited, an offering crafted by Sony on its own that never lived up to the company's hopes of reaching iTunes-level stature.

On Monday, PlayStation Music launched in 41 countries, including the US, UK and Australia. The program allows owners of the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4 to use Spotify for background listening during gaming or to set up their TV as a stereo for the streaming service. You can skip tracks or turn up the music either with the gaming controller, your mobile device or a tablet.

Current users of Music Unlimited will receive a free two-month trial of Spotify Premium. The Music Unlimited service ended Sunday.