Google Tunes in Search to Music

Google on Thursday said it was launching a new music service that would make it easier for users to find information on artists, album titles and song lyrics. Google Music would also provide links to download songs if they are available from the major digital music services.

The search engine cautioned speculators from reading too much into the new feature, as it said it had no plans for a digital music service of its own, but rather sending traffic to other sites.

Four sites have initially partnered with Google to provide the purchase options: iTunes, Real Rhapsody, eMusic and Amazon.com.

"Right now the music search feature mostly works for popular U.S. artists and a more limited number of artists from other countries, but we plan to expand it to classical music, worldwide artists, and lesser-known performers," Google's Search Quality Product Manager David Alpert explained. "Our list of music stores will also grow over time."

But it's unclear if the site may run into legal trouble soon after it launches. On Monday, a report from the BBC indicated that the music publishing industry planned to take sites that provide music lyrics to court over copyright infringement issues.

Google also plans to include Web pages of its own with more information on specific artists, as well as reviews of albums from various sites on the Internet.

Both MSN and Yahoo offer a similar feature from their sites, however both serve as an extension of sorts to their respective digital music services.

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