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Microsoft is killing its Spotify competitor, will partner up with Spotify instead

Microsoft is discontinuing Groove Music Pass, its streaming music service, on December 31st. Later this week, Groove Music Pass users will have the option to import their custom playlists to Spotify. 

The news was announced in a blog post on Monday afternoon

Groove Music Pass was never a tremendous hit  — while Microsoft has never released specific user numbers or revenue for the service, it’s generally understood that Groove Music lags well behind the market-leading Spotify’s 60 million subscribers, or Apple Music’s 30 million

Groove Music Pass was accessed via the Groove app in Windows 10. Microsoft promises that the Groove app will stick around for Windows 10 to play music purchased from the Windows Store. You’ll just lose the option to use the Groove Music Pass streaming service at year’s end.

Windows users have no shortage of alternative music streaming options. Services like Spotify, Pandora, and Deezer are all available via the Windows 10 app store, with Apple iTunes  — and, thus, Apple Music  — coming soon.

Groove Music Pass was the successor to Xbox Music Pass, a streaming service launched in 2012. And in 2006, before Spotify was even an idea, Microsoft had Zune Music Pass, a subscription service that gave Zune owners unlimited music downloads every month.

This means that Microsoft is without a music service of its own for the first time in over a decade. And dedicated Microsoft fans are disappointed by the retirement, and perhaps a sign that the company isn’t focused on consumer services. 

Perhaps to ease the transition, Microsoft is offering some Groove Music Pass subscribers a 60-day free trial of the Spotify Premium paid music streaming service. 

Get the latest Microsoft stock price here.

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