YouTube Music Key Beta Now Live, Includes Offline and Background Playback

Google promised offline and background playback as a part of of its new YouTube Music Key subscription service, but didn’t provide a timeline of availability or specify whether all users would be able to take advantage at first. Apparently, today is the day and it’s going live indiscriminately; we’ve corroborated reports on reddit of options appearing in the YouTube app to play audio in the background and download videos. Most people who signed up for the Music Key beta (or who have All Access subscriptions) are seeing the new features. (more…)

How to: Store Music on Android Wear for Offline Playback

With an update to Android 4.4W.2, Android Wear now supports music playback while offline, which is a fancy way of saying that it is not connected to your phone. This is a pretty useful new feature, as you can pair your watch with a Bluetooth headset, leave your phone behind, and enjoy music on the go (it’s great for workouts where you don’t want to lug your massive phone around).

Since many of you are now receiving this new 4.4W.2 update, we thought it was time to walk you through the steps on how to setup this new functionality. The entire process can be a bit tricky, and is also insanely slow, so let’s talk it out together.  (more…)

Google Play Music Update Brings Songza Integration

After purchasing Songza earlier this year, a company which created “contextual expert-curated playlists to give you the right music at the right time,” it appears that Google is ready to unveil the work it has done to integrate the service into their own music platform, Google Play Music.

From what has been announced, the integration is somewhat minimal, but users will see a big difference in the Listen Now section of the application. Once the application is updated on your device, you will see many more “expertly curated” playlists that are suited to time of day, weather, activities, and the date.  (more…)

This is Google Play Music 5.6.1640 With a Material Design Makeover

By the time Android 5.0 “Lollipop” officially arrives for the world to use with the Nexus 9 on November 3, I would imagine that Google will flip the switch on a number of massive updates to its core Google apps. We are talking design overhauls of Gmail, Maps, Drive, and Google Play Music with Material Design. But, since we know that many of you would rather not have to wait another couple of weeks to see what’s in store, we thought we should point out that a number of the new re-made apps have surfaced through a leak that has been incorporated into a Nexus 4 ROM. That’s right, someone leaked a ROM from the Nexus 6, which included all of the refreshed Google apps, like Play Music.

So yeah, this is what Google Play Music 5.6.1640 looks like. How pretty is this?  (more…)

Deal: Buy a Nexus 7 from Google Play, Get 3 Free Months of All Access

In case you needed a reason to pick up a spare Nexus 7 (2013) or two, Google is offering fairly good incentive for residents of the US.

From now until September 30, you can get 3 free months of Google Play Music All Access with the purchase of a Nexus 7 through the Play Store. Only customers who aren’t subscribed to All Access or who haven’t already activated a free trial before are eligible. (more…)