Microsoft's Groove ousts 'Xbox Music' in time for Windows 10

Groove music streaming service is Microsoft's replacement for Xbox Music

Microsoft's response to Apple's new music service, Apple Music: Anything you can do, I can do better. The Redmond-based company today unveiled the evolution of its Xbox Music service which will come prepackaged with every copy of Windows 10.

The newly branded service, called Groove, will help users "[get] into music is faster than ever with easy-to-use menus and navigation controls that work well with both mouse/keyboard, and with familiar touch gestures on touch-screen devices," according to a post on Microsoft's Windows Blog.

Groove is expected to be free to use, though Microsoft plans on rolling out a subscription service called Groove Music Pass that will enable offline play, unlimited on-demand streaming from Microsoft's music catalog of over 40 million songs and ad-free radio for $9.99/month (about £6/AU$13) or $99/year (about £64/AU$130).

Groove will work in tandem with OneDrive, Microsoft's cloud storage platform, and be available to download on Windows phones and tablets, Xbox One, PCs and Macs via a web client and even on Android phones and eventually iOS.

According to the blog post, Groove will completely replace Xbox Music when the service launches alongside Windows 10 on July 29 and current Xbox Music Pass subscribers will be automatically subscribed for Groove Music Pass without needing to sign up all over again.

Also mentioned in the blog post was a change to Microsoft's Xbox Video service that will now simply be called Movies & TV. The only other change besides the terminology is that Movie & TV will directly feed content from the Windows Store and that it will add long-awaited .mkv support - a file type for high-quality video files.

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