Google MusicGoogle is planning to open a new MP3 music store, and has entered into negotiations with major record labels, reports the New York Times.

The MP3 store, which would work in conjunction to Google’s Music Beta cloud service, would directly compete against Amazon and Apple’s iTunes store.

Like both Apple and Amazon, music purchases made through Google’s new store would be accessible through its Music Cloud service, which allows customers to back up songs on Google’s servers so that they can stream them to a variety of devices.

Google is likely in a race to get the store up before Apple launches iTunes Match, the $25 a year service that gives people legal access to any songs currently in their iTunes music library. That service is scheduled to roll out later this month.

However, both Google and Apple are already late to the game. Amazon was the first to launch a cloud service to compliment its customers’ digital media purchases. The company offers a cloud drive with 5Gb of space, which customers can upload anything they want into.

As VentureBeat reported in May, Google’s previous talks with record labels about creating its own “digital locker” service were unsuccessful due to piracy concerns. According to the NYT’s report, the current negotiations would solve this problem by matching up each song to account for what people are listening to — much like iTunes Match.

Its earlier negotiations with music companies, for a so-called smart locker service — a Web storage system that lets people link their digital music collections to a vast central database — broke down over financial terms and the music companies’ complaints that Google was not doing enough to curb piracy.

Google was unavailable for immediate comment about a possible MP3 store.

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