Consumer Confidential: Google Music, iTunes Match, no-job majors


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Here’s your West-End-girls Wednesday roundup of consumer news from around the Web:

-- Google has learned to sing. The searchmeister is entering the online music market with a new service that will let users store songs online and listen to tracks on multiple devices. Google has expanded into music, television and movies to bolster sales of devices running its Android mobile software. The company is also seeking rights for its Google+ social-network users to share music with each other. On the eve of the debut, Google reached an agreement with Sony’s music unit. Universal and EMI have already signed on. Songs will cost 99 cents to $1.29, though Google may offer discounts. (Bloomberg)

-- Not to be outdone, Apple has rolled out a new iTunes Match service. For $24.99, iTunes account holders can store their entire iTunes library, plus songs from their CDs, in the cloud that is the Internet. The library contents are then available to listen to on computers and iOS devices, including iPhones. The program differs from Google Music and Amazon Cloud Player because iTunes Match isn’t based on uploading your music then listening to it via a Web-based player that streams your songs. Instead, it determines which songs in your collection are available in the iTunes Store, which boasts some 20 million songs. The program automatically adds these songs to iCloud. Songs that aren’t in iTunes can be uploaded by the user. (Lifehacker)


-- Not all college majors are created equal -- at least when it comes to giving you a leg up in the job market. College majors with high unemployment rates include a variety of psychology degrees, fine arts and architecture, according to Census statistics. Here are the Top 10 majors (or should that be Bottom 10?) for not getting a job: Clinical psychology (19.5% unemployment rate), miscellaneous fine arts (16.2%), U.S. history (15.1%), library science (15%), military technologies (10.9%), educational psychology (10.9%), architecture (10.6%), industrial and organizational psychology (10.4%), miscellaneous psychology (10.3%), linguistics and comparative literature (10.2%). (MarketWatch)

-- David Lazarus