Yandex launches Yandex.Radio, A Curated Free Music Service for Russian Users

Russians will be one of the first countries to get access to the new music service that Apple is reportedly launching next week. Russian search giant Yandex will enhance its own. Today it announced Yandex.Radio, an ad-supported streaming music service that provides around 100 ready-made “stations” to users organised around moods and themes, initially available Russia only.

The company says in a blog post “People just like to have some background music while they are working out in a gym, driving to work, or chatting at a party. Alternatively, people choose their background music to match how they feel at the moment – cheerful or vigorous, moody or relaxed,”. “Yandex.Radio is a service for those who like to choose their music based on their current activity or state of mind.”

It will be based around the same music catalog that forms the backbone of Yandex.Music, a service that costs the equivalent of around $5per month for users to stream any track from the catalog.

In a market notorious for music piracy and online platforms that turn a blind eye to unlicensed downloads and streaming, Yandex.Music is known as the country’s biggest legit online music outfit. It’s still not huge though: only around 10 million users at the moment, Yandex says.

Yandex is known as the Google of Russia not just because it is the country’s largest search engine, but because it’s building out a whole range of services around that basic premise. They include maps, taxi hailing apps, classifieds, online shopping aggregation, video, email, online storage, and just about anything else that you can conceive of having a cloud or search component to it.