Tomahawk, WI 06/13/2014 (Basicsmedia) – Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN)’s long-rumored music streaming service Prime Music has gone live yesterday though absent the catalog from Universal Music Group which is the world’s largest music company as the companies were unable to reach an agreement about licensing terms. But Amazon’s music streaming will include music from Sony and Warner Music which are the other two major record labels as well as independent record labels.

Free for Prime Subscribers

Amazon Prime service subscribers will get access to thousands of songs for the hefty annual subscription of $99 that they are paying now after a recent hike from $79. Lacking access to the catalog of Universal means there will be no Lady Gaga or Katy Perry songs nor any Kanye music on Prime. However, Amazon has obtained “compulsory” licenses using provisions of federal copyright laws which means a limited use of the songs belonging to Universal.

Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN)’s catalog as of now is small compared to that of established players like Spotify and Beats Music; however, Amazon’s catalog will only keep growing and its huge customer base of more than 200 million — out of whom, 20 million are Prime subscribers — gives it a definite advantage.

Amazon’s target is likely the other behemoths of the tech industry who are also serious about online streaming of music and movies. Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is getting serious about its own online streaming offerings via its iTunes Radio and with Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) planning to launch its own satellites, music and movies streaming — via YouTube and otherwise — won’t be quite out of place for the search giant either.

Game of Content

With recent agreements with HBO to get access to hit shows like The Sopranos and The Wire as well as older seasons of ongoing shows like The Girls, Amazon is adding to its library of content.

Not only that but inspired by the success of original programming from Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLX), Amazon has green lighted two original shows of its own.

Amazon Smartphones

If, as expected, Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) launches its own smartphones to add to its stable of extremely successful Kindle devices, it will eventually become quite a giant provider of both services and hardware leading to the creation of an Amazon ecosystem like Apple’s existing ecosystem.

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