Google made a number of giant leaps today at the Google I/O conference. In addition to announcing their Google TV initiative, they also introduced Android 2.2, codenamed Froyo, which will enable Android users to download the public beta release of Flash Player 10.1.
But also in the mix is Google’s foray into online music in the form of an iTunes competitor. TechCrunch reports:
Details are sparse at the moment, but here’s how this basically works. You go to the [Android] Market on the web, find a song you like, click the download button, and just like with apps, the song starts to download on your Android devices. So it’s iTunes, over the web, with auto-syncing. No word on who the partners are for this, what the prices will be, etc. Undoubtedly, we’ll hear more about that soon.
Moreover, Google also announced that they had recently purchased Simplify Media, a startup company with software that lets users share their media files, including iTunes content, across platforms. Google explained that they will soon offer a desktop app built on Simplfiy Media’s technology that will enable Android users to stream their DRM-free media remotely to their device. It’s unclear at this point if the service will work over 3G or only via Wi-Fi.
Either way, it’s a cool concept and we’ll be watching closely to see how it plays out. We should note that Apple is rumored to be working on a similar service tentatively known as “iTunes Replay” that would allow iPhone users to stream their entire music library from the cloud down to their device.