Confirmed: Spotify US will launch Thursday
Updated. Spotify has made no secret of its plans to definitely come to the United States. And if our sources are correct, the popular European on-demand music streaming service will be available stateside within a matter of days.
UPDATE: Spotify has confirmed it will launch in the U.S. on Thursday, July 14. In an email sent Wednesday afternoon, a spokesperson wrote that Spotify “will become available tomorrow morning in the United States by invitation and subscription.” The company plans to release more details Thursday morning at 8 a.m. EDT.
As GigaOM reported last month, a source familiar with the company’s strategy says Spotify’s U.S. launch is slated to occur in mid-July. Other reports have placed Spotify’s U.S. launch between July 5 and July 15. Any way you slice it, it’s very likely Spotify’s U.S. debut is now in T-minus territory.
We’ve been told Spotify will be made available in the U.S. under a three-tiered pricing model: A free ad-supported service, a $5/month subscription, and a $10/month subscription. Spotify already has a similar three-tiered pricing scheme in place in Europe. The company has set up a landing page where people can sign up to receive an invite for the U.S. service as soon as it’s made available.
Spotify has been gearing up for its U.S. debut for months. In June, the company closed on $100 million in new venture capital funding to help fuel its international growth. The latest batch of money came from a group that included several first-time Spotify investors, including Russian venture capital firm DST and California-based VCs Kleiner Perkins and Accel Partners.
Spotify has been available solely in Europe since its initial launch in October 2008. The service has already amassed more than 10 million users there, more than a tenth of whom pay for the service. Here in the U.S., the online music scene has a number of players such as Pandora, the Internet radio service that went public last month, and Last.fm, the long-running online radio service acquired by CBS in 2007. The level of competition in the U.S. may be why Spotify is planning to team up with Facebook: to establish a solid American user base right out the gate.
Without a doubt, the Spotify service has gained a lot of momentum in its relatively short lifespan — but how it will be received by consumers once it finally lands on U.S. shores is still anyone’s guess. Luckily, we won’t have to wait much longer to find out.
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