Since there's no such thing as too many music apps, Thumbplay has announced at CES its plan to turn its song and ringtone e-store into a downloadable, cloud-based, on-demand music player for desktops and smartphones.
Thumbplay Music launches on Thursday as an invitation-only beta for Windows, Mac, and select BlackBerry smartphones. A single Adobe AIR app will run Thumbplay Music on Windows and Mac. At launch, the app supports BlackBerry Tour (9630), Bold (9000), and Curve (8900) phones. Compatibility with a greater number of BlackBerry models, and apps for iPhone and Android, are next on Thumbplay's road map.
Thumbplay is modeling its nascent app on a subscription service that touts unlimited on-demand playback for artists and albums, a search feature, favorites that can synchronize between the smartphone and desktop app, and an offline playback mode. Thumbplay Music also supports iTunes playlists and playlists of your own creation on both the desktop and phone versions. A music discovery element similar to Pandora additionally seeks out tunes based on songs you already like.
Already an online presence, Thumbplay's repertoire includes songs from Universal Music Group, Sony Music Entertainment, Warner Music Group, EMI Music, and independent labels like CD Baby, INgrooves, and IODA.
Although the apps themselves are free, Thumbplay will adopt a subscription-based pricing model for the service once the apps become generally available in early 2010. After a free, three-day trial, the on-demand music service will cost $9.99 per month. The private beta, however, lets you try it out now for free. You can sign up on the Thumbplay Music site.