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-- It is expected that iLike and Lala will announce their involvement in the new Google music service at an event next Wednesday (Oct. 28) in Hollywood. According to MediaMemo’s Peter Kafka, the new service will be called One Box and will be a “refined set of answers for music queries.” In other words, Google is not building an iTunes killer or a Spotify killer. Rather, it will harness its search engine power to better lead people to the content they desire. These search results will lead to purchase options and streaming options (which may include Lala).
Citing unnamed sources, CNET claims all four majors are on board for a service that will feature links to Lala and iLike. Based on conversations with sources, CNET described how One Box will work:
"The way this music One Box will work is that a person who keys in the names U2 or Coldplay, for example, will find a thumbnail photo of the artists, background information, as well as a listing of the music that they can preview, according to the sources."
And what does “One Box” mean? It’s a term that already exists in Google’s lexicon. CNET explained:
"My colleague Stephen Shankland tells me that One Box is the term Google uses to describe a "gussied up search engine result." The company "packages stuff up into a nice little container that's got more than a line of blue hyperlinked text." There are One Box results for video, for financial information and for the weather. The kind of results for this version of a music One Box would appear to a fuller offering."
An example of a Google OneBox results can be viewed here. In the music example, a search for Moby returns a link to music at the top of the page. One can already get a list of places to buy certain artists in Google search results. Type in ”music:moby”, for example, and the results list 19 albums with links to retailers like iTunes, Rhapsody, eMusic and Tower Records. Based on these search results, one can get an idea of how Lala and iLike could be integrated into Google music searches.
And where did the name OneBox come from? The OneBoxer blog explains:
"In fact, the name isn’t from those results at all. It all goes back to the page before your results - the search page. These results come about from a single search box (one box) on the Google homepage, presenting you with options without having to search in any different manner than you’re accustomed to."
-- Google Analytics, a favorite of music companies, managers and artists, has been improved to include new features such as expanded mobile reporting, better table filtering and report sharing. Follow the link for videos that explain how the new tools work. (Google Analytics blog)
-- Following a meeting with European competition regulators, Apple is "optimistic" it will offer iTunes to customers in more European countries in the next year. (9to5Mac.com)
-- The Register has the tale of a member of the Pirate Party appearing at the In The City conference in London. In short, the Pirate talking points were a five-year term for copyright, price should be set at the zero marginal cost of digital goods, and music companies should take a cue from high-priced bottled waters such as Volvic and Evian when fighting against free P2P (whatever that means). The article goes well beyond the Pirate Party platform and captures the spirited debate that went on at the conference. (he Register)
-- The Deep Ellum neighborhood of Dallas may be getting three new music clubs. (Dallas Observer's Dallas Music Blog)
-- At the intersection of Pandora's recommendation engine and specific music tastes is humorous, insightful writing. Commenting on the New York Times Sunday Magazine's article on Pandora, the Nashville Scene's music blog gave a blow-by-blow account of a Pandora experience. "In practice, it comes out something like this: I typed in 'Kings of Leon' and was told their music is characterized by 'major key tonality' and 'extensive vamping,' among other things. After playing KOL's 'Arizona,' the site told me that ' "Dashboard" by Modest Mouse has similar basic rock song structures, punk influences, mild rhythmic syncopation, extensive vamping and use of a string ensemble.'" (It's also terrible, but let's not get ahead of ourselves.)" (Nashville Cream)
Follow Billboard senior analyst Glenn Peoples on Twitter at twitter.com/billboardglenn.