July 31, 2009

Spotify to hit the US?

The music streaming app that is currently taking the UK and Europe by storm is looking to set-up in the US in the very near future. (This may well help create music industry jobs in the USA, so keep checking the Jobs Board!)

Founded by two Swedish entrepreneurs, Spotify has over six million tracks available to stream, and gives users the ability to create, save and share playlists, offering greater interaction and discovery. They are working with US music publishers and labels to evolve a deal to enable them to offer the same service here. Having dealt with many of the key companies regarding European licenses, it’s a very real possibility that they will be operating here soon.

The relatively new start-up (October ’08) is hoping to launch it’s desktop application in the US by the end of this year. However, even greater potential could be reached if they are approved as an iPhone app. The issue there? It could be so good as to make Apple’s iTunes virtually redundant to millions of music consumers.

Spotify derives revenue from a number of audio commercials during playback (current EU advertisers include Nike, Ikea, H&M and more), or a monthly fee for a premium service with no commercials, greater audio quality and extra premium-only content. The monthly fee is currently £9.99 in the UK (approx $15), and word is that the mobile app would only be available to those who subscribe to this.

People are becoming excited about the possibility of a real contender to iTunes, and as a fan of aiding music discovery, I really hope that Spotify will push forward with the licensing deals. They provide a great service, and user word-of-mouth will ensure a global success.

Lee Jarvis.

(Cross-posted at US Music Jobs, the premier online community for US music industry professionals and jobs in the music industry)

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