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Google launches music cloud

Company announces development of new OS called Ice Cream Sandwich for use across all Android devices

Google launches music cloud
Google has launched a new cloud-based music service called Music Beta by Google. The company has also announced its new OS, the Android Ice Cream Sandwich.

Google has launched a new music service that allows users to upload their music to the Music Beta by Google cloud for streaming to a user's computer and any other Android devices.

The new service will automatically sync users' devices when new music or playlists are added to any of the synchronized Android devices.

"If you create a new playlist on your phone, it's instantly available on your computer or tablet. You can use a feature called Instant Mix to create a playlist of songs that go well together. You can even listen to music when you're offline: we automatically store your most recently played music on your Android device and you can choose to make specific albums or playlists available when you're not connected," read a blog post by Hugo Barra, product management director, Android on the official Google Blog.

The service has launched for beta testing in the US and is only currently available by invitation.

Google has also announced that it has added movies for rent to the Android Marketplace. Users can now choose from a list of thousands of movies which will be available to play on any Android device. Prices for movie rentals start at $1.99.

Google has also begun developing Google Android Open Accessory, which is designed to help developers build new hardware accessories that will work across all Android devices.

"We previewed an initiative called Android@Home, which allows Android apps to discover, connect and communicate with appliances and devices in your home. We also showed a preview of Project Tungsten, an Android device for Music Beta to give you more control over music playback within the Android@Home network," said Barra.

Google has also revealed that a new version of Android is in development called Ice Cream Sandwich.

This OS will be designed to deliver one operating system that will work everywhere, regardless of the device. Ice Cream Sandwich will use features from Honeycomb and develop those features for use on both tablets and phones and will include the holographic interface, debut more multitasking features and the new launcher as well as richer widgets, according to Google.

The Google team has also revealed that there are now 100 million activated Android devices with 400,000 activated every day. Android Market now features 200,000 free and paid applications and 4.5 billion applications have been installed from Android Market.

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