Amazon has launched its Cloud Player in the UK, France and Germany.
The online music storage and playback service holds purchases from the Amazon MP3 Store in the cloud. Users can also import music to Amazon where it will be matched and replicated in the Cloud Player as a high-quality 256 kps MP3.
It’s the ‘scan and match’ facility that puts the service in direct competition with Apple’s iTunes Match.
The Cloud Player offers users enough space to store 250 songs from their existing collection and MP3 Store purchases. A premium tier is available for £21.99 annually, which boosts capacity to 250,000 songs.
The Amazon Cloud Player has also been updated with UK, German and French support in the Apple App Store.
Amazon has placed the following message to fans on its homepage:
Managing a digital music collection can be a bit messy. You can buy music from your phone, but how do you transfer it to your home or work computer? Also, if you're not regularly backing up your music collection, you can lose it with a disk drive crash.
Today, we're introducing an important new service to give you a simple way to keep your music safe and have it with you, everywhere. It's called Amazon Cloud Player. MP3 songs and albums you purchase from Amazon.co.uk, even those you purchased in the past, will be available in Cloud Player, which means you'll have a secure backup copy of the MP3s you buy at Amazon, free of charge.
We've also made it easy to get the rest of the music that's on your computer to Cloud Player, even music purchased from iTunes or uploaded from CDs. We'll match the songs on your computer to Amazon.co.uk's catalogue of over 20 million songs. All songs we match are instantly made available in Cloud Player and upgraded to high-quality 256 kbps audio. Music we can't match will be uploaded to Cloud Player, so your entire digital music collection will be available."