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Brier Dudley's blog

Brier Dudley offers a critical look at technology and business issues affecting the Northwest.

July 13, 2011 at 4:01 PM

Spotify launching Thursday, lookout Rhapsody, Pandora

European streaming music service Spotify just announced that it’s launching its streaming music service in the U.S. Thursday.

The company is expected to pose a significant challenge to established services such as Pandora and Seattle-based Rhapsody, especially since investors recently pumped $100 million into the company to support its U.S. debut.

Spotify’s offices are in Stockholm and London.

Spotify offers three tiers of service — a free, ad-supported version, an “unlimited” plan with no ads and a “premium” version with no ads and the ability to play tracks on mobile devices and also on mobile devices and PCs when they are offline.

Pricing for the premium service is $9.99 per month, the same as Rhapsody’s all-you-can-eat music service. A brief release issued this afternoon said the service will initially be available “by invitation and subscription” and more details will be released Thursday.

Rhapsody last week announced that its service is growing and it now has 800,000 paying subscribers. Chief Executive Jon Irwin told me last month that he expects even more growth from partnerships with phone companies.

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