This is starting small, but could be significant in the long term: Google is now directing mobile searches for music towards legal digital services. For now, this only works for Android devices in the US, but there are plans to expand. “Starting today, when you ask Google about a musician, you can simply tap a link to play their music right in one of your installed apps,” explained Google Search group product manager Jason Douglas in a blog post. For now, the feature works with six services: Rdio, Spotify, iHeartRadio and TuneIn, along with Google’s own Google Play and YouTube. “We’re working to expand this feature to users worldwide, with their local services like Deezer,” explained Douglas. The potential here is clear: Android has massive scale, and bumping legal apps up to the fore in search results is a welcome alternative to links to unlicensed downloads or streams.

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