Updated: Google India Shuts Down Its Music Search Service


Google Music India

Update: Google India has confirmed this shutdown and has shared the following statement with Medianama:

We are always trying out new products and formats to improve the experience for our users. Given that we have a lot of legal music options for users now (raaga, gaana, in.com, saavn, dhingana, youtube etc) being featured on search, we felt we did not need a dedicated product for the purpose.

Earlier: It looks like Google has pulled the plug on its music search service Google Music India. The site is now redirecting users to Google India search page at the time of writing this article. This shutdown was first reported by NextBigWhat.

The service was launched in October 2010 and allowed users to search for songs by artist, movie, album or song title and listen to the song online from the partner’s site. It had claimed to have partnerships with music label Saregama, Web18 owned In.com and online music streaming site Saavn to source metadata of thousands of songs owned or licensed by partners to make them searchable on Internet.

Interestingly, when we had checked Google Music India last week, it seemed to work fine, although the site offered old catalogue, indicating that Google India had probably shelved the project sometime earlier. Its also worth noting that Google had always positioned the music service as a experimental labs product. So its possible that the service didn’t probably take off as per the company’s expectations, although Google is known for shutting down products randomly.

As a concept, Google Music India was quite interesting in what they did, since it allowed users to search and stream any specific song from the partner website. This becomes really important in the current scenario where the music availability on the existing streaming sites like Gaana*, Dhingana, Saavn and Hungama is quite tricky, where some songs are limited to a single service, due to the respective licensing deals inked by these companies.  Due to this, one has to constantly switch between these services to listen to their favorite songs, which is quite a cumbersome experience for consumers.

On the other hand, a Google Music India type of service offers a single destination where consumers can go, search for their favorite song and stream it, without depending on any specific service. Guruji also offered a similar music search service but it was shut down in March 2011. Now that this service has also shutdown, we wonder if there are any takers for this type of service.

Third Music Service Shutting Down In Past Year

The shutdown of Google Music India makes it the third shutdown in the music segment. In December 2012, Rediff had shut down its online music service Songbuzz, three years after it began in November 2009. E-commerce major Flipkart had also surprisingly shutdown its digital music store Flyte Music last month, just a year and half after it began in February 2012. (Also read: Why Flipkart Shut Down Flyte Music)

*Disclosures may apply. Click here for more.

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  • Piyush Nahata

    Music around the world is dying, because of the vast spread of Internet to people and its power (like downloading album through torrentz) why pay for something which you can get it for free, its not that when you pay and buy you get something more out it, its the same.

    A ground breaking change is required, There are two options – either something like Pirate Bay or Changing the format of the song and making it only playable on Certain format on certain devices, which cannot be shared – like Andriod, Windows, iOS and various other platforms need to come together to challenge and change the whole music scenario or else, its going down the dust.