Xbox Music gets iOS and Android apps, free web playback; cloud locker to follow


The times they are a-changin’ at Microsoft, (S MSFT) and we are not just talking about the company’s executive leadership: Xbox Music, the company’s Spotify-like music subscription service, is launching on iOS and Android Monday, making it the first Microsoft-owned entertainment service to launch on the two leading mobile platforms. And speaking of firsts: Microsoft is also debuting free, ad-supported music streaming on the web.

Microsoft tried to make a big splash with Xbox Music last year, when it unveiled the service as an ambitious take on Spotify with a bold design, Xbox branding and Smartglass integration. However, the attempt to create a unique experience across multiple screens didn’t really click with consumers, and some of the Windows 8-influenced design choices actually made using the service pretty difficult.

That’s why the Xbox Music team went back to the drawing board to simplify its service. The result is something…

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