Google buys Songza to make Play Music curation cool (Wired UK)


The new arrivals tent at Google HQ has been bursting all year,
but that’s not stopping the search giant from welcoming more
companies into the fold. The latest of these is Songza — a company
that’s pretty much unknown outside of the US and Canada, but that
Google has just bought for a sum rumoured to be around $39

So what is Songza exactly, and why does Google want it?

In a blog
announcing the acquisition, Google says of the company:
“They’ve built a great service which uses contextual expert-curated
playlists to give you the right music at the right time.” Songza is
an app that’s been around for three or so years and is used for
making customised playlists. Every music streaming service out
there is attempting to grow a curation arm at the moment, and it’s
the expertise that Google is clearly hoping to take advantage

Google goes on to say that it isn’t planning to change anything
initially at Songza, and that the service will continue to work as
normal for anyone who already uses it, which is probably not
relevant to anyone within the UK. It also says, however, that it
will soon start to “explore ways to bring what you love about
Songza to Google Play Music”. Songza will also probably find its
way onto YouTube and into other Google products, it adds.

Songza echoes these ideas, saying in a statement: “We
can’t think of a better company to join in our quest to provide the
perfect soundtrack for everything you do. No immediate changes to
Songza are planned, other than making it faster, smarter, and even
more fun to use.”

From the outside these two companies couldn’t seem more
different. Head to Songza’s
and you’ll see a Tumblr-esque layout with retro photos
and GIFs and blog posts announcing playlists curated by indie
bands. It all contrasts starkly with Google’s clean-cut corporate
but cheerful image. But Google knows what’s good for it and when it
comes to music, it pays to be edgy. Expect to see Google Play Music
meets Songza in one form or another soon. No doubt it will look
endearing — a bit like if your dad and his pals dressed up in
hipster garb and tried to start a band.

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