Baidu’s dominant position in the Chinese search engine market has been largely attributed to its controversial practice of linking to pirated music in their search results – which has already cost the site a couple of lawsuits. But Google is getting ready to take on Baidu by launching its own music search site that will give users access to free downloads of licensed songs.
The move was actually announced back in February but after month of negotiations, Google finally launched the service which will be supported by advertising revenue that would be split between the music industry and Chinese music download website Top100.cn. The search giant has also invested in Top100 as part of this partnership, though the exact amount remains unknown.
The service, dubbed Google Music Onebox, will certainly help Google in its quest to become the dominant player in the Chinese internet market within the next five years – all while helping curb the rampant culture of illegal music downloads in the country.