If you have been holding out on paying $25/year for iTunes Match in hopes that the free alternative Google Play Music might finally launch for iOS, the wait could soon be over. According to sources close to the matter, Google is finishing up internal testing on a native iOS version of their cloud music and streaming service, and it could debut this month.
Over the summer, Google debuted Play Music All Access, a subscription streaming service offering users their pick of on-demand music, much like Spotify. Apple’s answer was iTunes Radio, a decidedly less robust music tool more akin to Pandora. It’s unclear, however, if Google’s app will only support the paid version of their service or if it will also support free streaming of a Play Music user’s entire cloud library.
Third-party alternatives have been making the rounds in the App Store, some of which support nearly all major features of the platform. However, they have been rife with bugs and other issues that make them less than ideal solutions. Google initially let slip plans to launch an iOS Play Music app over the summer, but the service was delayed due to DRM issues.