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Xbox Music Hits OZ

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Microsoft lets Xbox Music rip, which it claims is the “first all-in-one music service” where you can stream tunes – 30 million in total – to multiple devices from the cloud.

However, for now, it is only available on Xbox and Microsoft’s Windows 8 platform, meaning you will have to buy a new tab or PC to avail of the music, if you don’t already own an XBox.

The new music service can streamed for free on Windows 8 and Windows RT, to be released later this month, and lets users create an unlimited amount of playlists.

However, “free” streaming is limited to a certain number of hours after the first 6 months.

On TV, Xbox Music is streaming only and you must have a Microsoft console and pay an additional subscription.

Xbox Music says it has a global catalogue “on par with iTunes” and also comes with artist info like photos, bios, cover art and discography, and artist-based radio.

The A$11.99 Xbox Music Pass offer unlimited tunes including offline access (ad-free), and unlimited playback of any track in the subscription catalogue across multiple devices.

Xbox Music begins rolling out globally tomorrow on Xbox 360 consoles and later this month on Windows 8 and RT based PCs, tablets and phones.

Microsoft also says they will be letting Xbox Music loose on additional platforms later this year.

“The launch of Xbox Music is a milestone in simplifying digital music on every type of device and on a global scale,” said Don Mattrick, president of the Interactive Entertainment Business at Microsoft.

“We’re breaking down the walls that fracture your music experiences today to ensure that music is better and integrated across the screens that you care about most — your tablet, PC, phone and TV.”

You can also buy tunes or entire albums on The Xbox Music Store. Other features of the fledgling Microsft service that comes up against Spotify, Samsung Music Hub, JB Hi-Fi Now, are Artist based radio, Smart DJ, Cloud Storage, Social Music.

The Xbox Music Pass also unlocks unlimited access to “thousands” of music videos on Xbox 360.