Earlier this month we saw how the Honeycomb music app let users store their MP3 collections on Google’s servers and stream those libraries remotely, a key component of the long-awaited Google Music. The other part of a complete Google Music service would be a storefront, letting you download new music and add it to your streaming collection. While still not officially available yet, Google employees are reportedly testing the system internally, making us hopeful that Google Music will officially launch in the next few months.
The holdup for getting the music store component of Google Music going is reportedly those pesky record labels. Google needs everyone on board for it to offer a selection of tracks that rivals Apple’s with iTunes. Those licenses would presumably also cover the legal issues involved with storing user-submitted tracks on the company’s servers.
People familiar with the testing have reported that what we saw with the Honeycomb app isn’t necessarily how Google Music will end up working, though it does reflect the current state of the service. It looks like Google still has a lot of work to go, especially on the storefront side of things, but the forthcoming introduction of in-app purchasing may signal that even the storefront is starting to come together.