Spotify, Europe’s streaming music darling, just announced that it is finally ready to launch in the United States. The company, which currently offers a free and paid streaming music service in a select number of countries in Europe, has long been working on a U.S. launch, but until now, it didn’t have the necessary deals with the U.S. music industry in place. Judging from today’s announcement, those deals are now in place.
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As of now, though, Spotify hasn’t announced when it plans to launch yet, or what its pricing structure will look like. According to some of the rumors, one of the reasons why it took Spotify a long time to secure deals with the U.S. music labels was those organizations reluctance to let Spotify stream their music for free. In Europe, Spotify allows its users to stream a limited amount of songs for free every month. After that, users have to pay.
What made Spotify stand out among its early competitors was its ability to stream music on demand and for free. There are also numerous social elements to the service, including the ability to subscribe to other users’ playlists. Whether the U.S. version will have the same feature set, remains to be seen.
Given that Spotify is late to the party in the U.S., where services like Rdio and MOG have already managed to capture at least some of the early adopter market, it remains to be seen how well the company will do here. None of these, however, have quite the same ease of use that Spotify can offer.
This is a breaking story. We will update it as we learn more.