About a year or two ago, I decided to use Google Play Music as my "cloud host", so I took all of my old music that I'd had sitting on my computer, and uploaded it to Google Play Music. This is all my own purchased music, mostly originally from CDs (I'm older).

I now want to download some songs onto my Android device not simply so that I can listen to them, but so that I can have the .mp3 files. (E.g., to edit one down so it can be my wake up alarm, that sort of stuff.)

I cannot seem to find where Google Play Music put any of these. I have not rooted my device, and while I could go there, I'd rather avoid it, if possible. I saw other posts mentioning:

  • /<external card>/Android/data/com.google.android.music/cache or
  • /<external card>/Android/data/com.google.android.music/files or
  • /data/data/...

There is nothing in the first 2 directories, and it seems I need root access to get at the last directory. I read some similar posts that pointed to these directories, but some others that said this was for older versions. My version is 6.0.1984S.2219729. And, if it matters, I have a Samsung Galaxy S4 and Android version 5.0.1

It's really obnoxious that these apps refuse to play with each other nicely. Google and Samsung just have to kiss and make up, because it's ridiculous that Google apps can only talk to Google, and Samsung can only talk to Samsung. I shouldn't have to scurry around looking for all this. Desktop / Laptop OS's don't have this problem. It's an invented problem to help ensure monopoly ecosystems and frustrated customers. :-(

  • , but so that I can have the .mp3 files. this is simply impossible for a streaming service like Google Play Music (or Spotify etc.). They encrypt the files with a public key and decrypt them with a securely stored private key, whenever you want to listen to them. In fact they create a local cloud server, that serves the actual file like the Google Play Music server would do. TL;DR: You can't access any MP3 files from GP Music, because there are none.
    – GiantTree
    Commented Sep 8, 2015 at 16:25
  • You should be able to use adb pull to get files from /data/data Commented Sep 8, 2015 at 16:35
  • @MatthewRead only if his device is rooted though. Otherwise ADB just gets a Permission denied. message
    – GiantTree
    Commented Sep 8, 2015 at 16:55
  • Have you changed the storage location in the Google Play Music Settings?
    – conradj
    Commented Oct 1, 2015 at 10:54

3 Answers 3


In the settings of Google Play Music, if you have it set to cache on the external SD card, your cache location will be /external_sd/Android/data/com.google.android.music/files/music/.

If you have it use the internal storage, the path will be /sdcard/Android/data/com.google.android.music/files/music.

Note that these files are named [some-id].mp3, like 124.mp3. So just copying them from this location will be difficult to determine what song they are. Not only that, as GiantTree mentions, the files are encrypted, so even if you copy them off, you cannot play them. It requires Google Play Music to play them.

Here is a screenshot of my files on the external sdcard that I navigated to within .

enter image description here

And Here is using Windows MTP to browse the files.

enter image description here

  • For my Android 6.0.1, it's in /data/data/com.google.android.music/files/music.
    – Gqqnbig
    Commented Sep 14, 2016 at 5:40

if it's downloaded on internal, it's locked in com.music but you'll just see Music.id file and you cannot access that database without password. And its not encrypted if it's being downloaded to sd card just move from its Cache location and your good to go. Use star tag editor to add album art and tags . And songs purchased from Google aren't even .aac or .m4a just normal mp3 320Kbps 44khz .

  • 2
    Nope. They are encrypted both on internal and external drives.
    – Suncatcher
    Commented May 2, 2018 at 20:01
  • Thanks. In fact if you change location, the apps tells you 'moving x files'. After that you can find it in SD/Android/com.google.music/files folder in MP3 format. Commented Sep 6, 2018 at 16:07

This is from Windows 10 After reading all the posts and digging through my S7 to find my music files I downloaded from Google play, I found the location where they are stored. Simply plug in your phone and change the setting (on the phone) to "File Transfer" (without the quotes). This will allow you to access both your files on the phone storage as well as the SD card storage. Open "This PC", choose "Card" then go to the following (for Windows 10): This PC\PhoneName\Card\Android\data\com.google.android.music\files\music.

The files are named or referred to as "MP3 Format Sound" and are numbered rather than the actual name of the song, i.e. "191". That's it! Don't forget to change the setting on your Google Play to save the files onto your SD card. The default is internal storage. Good luck!

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