Earlier today Ryan Gavin, Microsoft’s GM for Apps and Services, posted over on the Windows Experience Blog about the changes that are coming next month to the Xbox Music app in Windows 8.1.
In that post he talks about a lot of the new features we have seen, that is if you are running the Windows 8.1 Preview, and I wrote about last month in our Xbox Music Gets Major Overhaul in Windows 8.1 post.
He mentions in his blog post that your music collection will not follow you across all your devices including being available on the web. That means you can access your free music streaming in a web browser now, as well as your cloud based music, if you happen to not be on Windows 8 or 8.1 when it comes out.
So I decided to check out the web interface for Xbox Music and see what it is all about since I had been using the Xbox Music app as my primary player on my Windows 8 devices.
As you look through the screen shots you will see a lot of similarities with the new Xbox Music app that is expected when Windows 8.1 becomes available to everyone on 18 October 2013.
When you first browse to http://music.xbox.com you will see this start page. Strangely enough logging in takes you to the main Xbox.com web portal for some reason instead of back to the Xbox Music site.
Once you log in you will see a familiar interface with the main window showing a cycle of featured artists on the right hand side.
On the left hand side column you have your Search Box, options to view your collection, explore for new music and to see what is playing. Just below that any playlists you have created will be listed plus that is where you can create a new playlist as well.
Your collection can be viewed Albums, Artists and Song.
The drop down account management menu can be accessed by clicking on your username in the upper right hand corner. The Manage Account link takes you to Xbox.com.
When you are playing a song you can access the drop down menu to add an album or song to an existing playlist, the now playing list or create a new playlist for it to be on.
If you are using Music Match to have cloud versions of your music available then you will see in the web interface of Xbox Music which ones are available to stream over the web and which ones are not.
Overall, the web based experience is very similar to that in the app itself and so that means shuffling between the app and the web should be fairly seamless.