LOS ANGELES – Google is adding a free tier to its subscription streaming music service in the U.S., aiming to convert the millions of people who click on the Google Play Music app every month but turn away because they're prompted for payment information.
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The service uses Songza, an Internet radio app that Google acquired a year ago and whose innovations it had reserved for paying customers.
Now playlists curated by Songza music experts, like "Drop-a-Beat Workout" and "Songs to Raise Your Kids To," will be available to U.S. users for free, interspersed with ads. Playlists that are automatically generated according to genres, songs or artists will also be available.
Google hopes the free tier will entice users to pay $10 a month for an "All Access" plan with on-demand playback without ads.