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Amazon Music Unlimited launched in the US

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This screengrab from You Tube shows a user receiving a flame-retardant box that Samsung is sending its customers to return their defective phones

Amazon's main selling point for Music Unlimited seems to be its tight integration with Echo devices and the Alexa voice assistant. But that access was very limited as Members could listen to music from a list of over two million songs only. By way of example, Amazon suggests that the command, "Alexa, play the song that goes 'I was doing just fine before I met you, '" will result in Alexa playing Closer by The Chainsmokers.

Owners of an Amazon Echo smart speaker, meanwhile, can get the service for just $4 a month. The new Amazon Music Unlimited unlocks tens of millions of songs and weekly new releases but there's a fee to pay, most of which will end up going to the record companies as royalties. You'll be able to access the service directly through your smartphone and/or tablet.

Amazon plans to add a family subscription later this year, which will allow up to six members simultaneous access to Amazon Music Unlimited.

Amazon did not reply to a request for comment from CBC News as to if and when the service might be available to Canadians.

Amazon launched its answer to Spotify and Apple Music on Wednesday, at price points created to attract its loyal customers.

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So is a subscription to Music Unlimited worth it?

About 78% of Amazon Prime members already listen to Amazon Music, Cowen analyst John Blackledge said in a research note Wednesday.

"Amazon Music Unlimited brings real value to the millions of people who are already Prime members, with a choice of subscribing for only $7.99 a month or even $79 per year". Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos says "ask Alexa for a free Music Unlimited trial, and play around on your Echo".

Amazon (AMZN) is turning up the volume on its streaming music services with a new offering that will compete head-to-head with Apple (AAPL) Music, Spotify, Pandora (P) and others.

E-commerce giant Amazon is set to give Spotify and Apple Music a run for their money, following the unveiling of its highly-anticipated, on-demand music streaming service.

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