Microsoft just did developers all over the world an amazing favour. They have opened up the Xbox Music service API to all developers, allowing them to search their 38 million tracks, download metadata and album art, do 30 second music previews, and for some developers even allow them to stream unlimited music for subscribers.
Even better Microsoft will let users of 3rd party apps purchase music, giving developers a 5% cut of each track purchased. Even better than that however, is that Microsoft will give developers a 10% cut of each new Xbox Music subscriber, which can amount to $1 per month per subscriber (or an easy $1000 per month if you convince 1000 people to subscribe to Xbox Music).
The service is available cross-platform via a REST API, meaning it will be as at home on the web or an Android app as on Windows Phone.
To read more about this great news, which is sure to result in a explosion of apps and maybe make a few very good developers rich, read more here.