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MP3tunes offers tuneful truce to Apple and Google

'Buy anywhere, listen everywhere'

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Online music-service provider MP3tunes has launched a new service that allows Apple and Google devices to play well together — well, play music, at least.

"It is no secret that Apple and Google are engaging in a battle royale," writes MP3tunes CEO and founder Michael Robertson in a Monday blog post. "MP3tunes is engaging in some family counseling for Google and Apple so that consumers can mix and match products from Apple and Google and have them work seamlessly together."

By "products," Robertson means music, and by "work seamlessly together," he's referring to his company's new Music Locker, a web-based music-storage service that enables tunes bought on your Android phone — from Amazon, for example — to be played on your iPhone/Pad/Pod touch, or tunes bought from the iTunes store to be played on your Android phone.

The methods used by the Locker to share tunes between Apple and Android devices differ, but Robertson & Co offer a series of helpful videos detailing the procedures.

Not that it's difficult to share tunes. In fact, after your initial setup and upload, the Locker's "buy anywhere, listen everywhere" process is simple and seamless using the (free) MP3tunes app on Android-based phones, or the (free) Airband app on Apple devices.

After, for example, your initial upload of your iTunes collection into the Locker, the MP3tunes app runs in the background, uploading any and all new tunes that you add to your Mac or PC it to your Locker. When you first play a tune from the Locker on your Android phone, it's downloaded to the phone where it's stored and can be played by any other music-playing app, such as the Android Music app, converted to a ringtone, or whatever.

The site's Terms and Conditions notes that "The Site is solely directed to individuals residing in the United States," but you're not locked out of the Locker if you're outside the States. In fact, MP3tunes says that "We welcome customers from all countries here at MP3tunes!" It's just that "Those who choose to access the Site from other locations do so on their own initiative and at their own risk..." Those risks would be legal ones, varying from country to country.

Getting aboard the Locker is free for 2GB of storage space, and $39.95 per year ($4.95 per month) for 50GB, $74.95 ($7.95 per month) for 100GB, and $139.95 ($12.95 per month) for 200GB. A free 10GB service is planned, with sign-ups now being taken for the upgrade once it becomes available — but be forewarned that the free service is ad-supported and includes no technical support.

You can buy music from essentially any digital-music source — Walmart, Zune, and Napster, for example — and despite its name, the MP3tunes service supports MP3, MP4, M4A, AAC, WMA, and OGG. Also, playback isn't limited to Android phones and Apple devices, though that's clearly MP3tunes' focus. You can also share tunes among PCs (Mac, Windows, and Linux), internet radios (Logitech, Audiovox, and Reciva), and other devices such as game consoles and settop boxes.

Any questions? If so, check out MP3tunes FAQ or ask them in the MP3tunes Community Forum. ®

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