Google revealed today via a support document that it will begin shutting down its Google Play Music service in September, with all subscribers off of the service—and on YouTube Music instead—by the end of December.
“Earlier this year, we announced our plan to sunset the Google Play Music experience,” the support document notes. “Starting September 2020, users will begin losing access to Google Play Music. This means you will no longer be able to listen to your music using Google Play Music. However, your music library will remain intact and can still be transferred to YouTube Music – you will have a minimum of 30 days after losing access to Google Play Music to complete your transfer. Not all Google Play Music users will lose access at the same time. This will happen on an ongoing basis between September and December 2020.”
Here’s the schedule:
August 2020. Access to the Music Store on Google Play, and Uploads to Google Play Music through Music Manager will start to go away.
September 2020. Access to Google Play Music begins going away for some users.
December 2020. Access to Google Play Music for all users is gone.
Google announced its plans to replace Google Play Music with YouTube Music in May, but it has been plotting this transition for over two years: It launched YouTube Music in 2018, and it has been steadily updating it since. And when Android 10 launched late last year, Google finally replaced Google Play Music with YouTube Music in the stock app install bundle.
I made the transition to YouTube Music a month or so ago and will detail my experience soon. The short version is that it’s mostly OK, but I miss a few niceties from Google Play Music and miss being able to cast to Sonos from the Google Play Music app. Also, if you use this app for podcasts, you’ll need to move to Google Podcasts or another app.