In Unlimited-Music Race, Rdio Beats Spotify To U.S. Launch

Despite trying for over a year, Spotify has been beaten to U.S. launch by Rdio, the comparable online music start-up backed by Atomico Ventures’ Niklas Zennstrom and Janus Friis, who earlier in their careers founded Skype and Kazaa.

Rdio on Tuesday switched off its beta service and went public in the U.S. and Canada only, offering unlimited web streaming for $4.99 a month or additional Android, iPhone and BlackBerry access for $9.99 a month – a similar pricepoint at which Spotify and comparable services operate elsewhere.

Billboard last week reported Spotify, which most recently has targeted end of 2010 for U.S. launch, is “back to square one” on the idea and “has approached the labels with a clean slate to determine what type of service would be possible”. Spotify’s CEO is philosophical…


But Billboard never asked Spotify and has since updated its story with Spotify’s recently-appointed US managing director Kenneth Parks commenting: