Amazon's new premium music service costs as much as 60 percent less than those offered by rivals Spotify and Apple. As Fred Katayama reports, it'll change the way users search for music.
Amazon deeply undercutting its rivals. It's offering unlimited access to its on-demand catalog of tens of millions of songs for $3.99 a month to users of its voice-activated Echo speakers. Amazon Music Unlimited costs 60 percent less than the standard $9.99 charged by rivals like Spotify and Apple. Members of its Prime free shipping service will pay $7.99 for those subscriptions or they can stick to their limited catalog of about two million free songs. What's more, Amazon is changing the way users can search for music. Echo users can simply tell its voice-activated assistant Alexa to play a certain song. Echo's artificial intelligence also allows users to ask for the latest hit song by an artist or just say a few words of the lyrics to call up a song whose title they can't remember. Jawdaw Research analyst Jan Dawson said the premium music service is "just making Prime that much stickier." Smartphones drove the music streaming boom, but with Echo and Music Unlimited, Amazon is betting that the next wave will be driven by streaming in the home.