Chinese web player Baidu has added sound recognition technology, similar to that offered by Shazam and SoundHound, to its music app.

Developer by the Baidu-I2R Reasearch Centre in Singapore, the functionality allows users to identify music they hear by exposing the app to an audio clip. The centre previously developed technology to unlock a Lenovo smartphone using voice.

Baidu Music App is available to iPhone and Android users and has already been downloaded more than half a million times. Users of the app can also share music information with friends via various social networks.

The Baidu Music database apparently contains several million music items from 17 music lists, including the UK chart.

Shazam claimed last week that its music recognition service has tagged 10 billion items of media. Available on iOS, Android and Windows Phone, the app has more than 350 million users in 200 countries and processes more than 100 million tags per week.

SoundHound said in July it had seen 140 million downloads across iOS, Android and BlackBerry.

Baidu is working to expand its reach in the Chinese mobile internet market with efforts including the $1.9 billion acquisition of Wireless 91, a third party Android app store, and recent introduction of the Light Apps distribution platform which allows consumers to use mobile apps without needing to download them.