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In a press conference this morning, streaming  Spotify announced the launch of a Spotify Apps platform into their streaming music service.  According to CEO, Daniel Ek, the service will bring better recommendations, ticketing and editorial content.  Launch partners include Rolling Stone, Billboard, Last.fm and Songkick amongst others.

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Millions of people are listening to digital  music via sites like Spotify and Pandor. These sites have strong followings for a number of reasons one of which being  the concept of  “passive discovery” or the ability to  stumble on new content based on artist or genre searches.

Amsterdam-based startup, Shuffler.fm is putting a new spin on that discovery process by aggregating music directly from blogs like Pitchfork, TheMusic.FM, and Stereogum in their  The service  allows listeners to play continuous mixes by genre..  In addition, music blogs can create their own dedicated pages that include a “play this blog” button.

While this may be nothing ground-breaking in the space,  Shuffle.fm’s slick new tablet interface offers users a great way to discover new artists (and music blogs for that matter) with some contextual relevance.  At the very least, it’s a refreshing change from the algorithm-based model we’ve become accustomed to thus far.

Shuffler.fm is currently available in the iTunes store and their pitch from SXSW’11 can be viewed here

MetroPCS announced plans effective today that will allow customers to benefit from unlimited Rhapsody music downloads for an undisclosed time.  The company is packaging the service alongside their $60 p/month unlimited talk, text and surf  plan.  In addition, the bundle plan includes visual voice mail, MetroNavigator, and Pocket Express.  In order to take advantage, the purchase of one of their two Android devices  is required.

Since information on the deal is still fresh and somewhat  limited, I took the opportunity  to stop in one of their retail stores this afternoon to grab some literature and ask some questions.  The service will be available on a stand-alone app and while details are a little fuzzy on how long the free Rhapsody service will last, one  employee hinted in the 2-3 month range.

MetroPCS Rhapsody Unlisted promotional flyer

Rhapsody\’s promotional page

MetroPCS\’s promotional page

UK-based site Mixibits is taking the mix-making experience retrosocial by allowing users to create personalized mix tapes with retro skins.  Once created, you can then share the mix on Facebook or twitter.  The site doesn’t allow full streaming versions of the songs but it does drive viewers to Amazon to purchase the tunes.

Go ahead, share your favorite slow jam mix from HS.  You know you want to.

Today, streaming music service Spotify launched in the US with all four major music labels on board.  At the moment, the service is by invitation only but the widespread launch will have three options:

  1. Free ad-supported service: gives users access to a number of tracks through the web, lets users organize and listen to their own music and provides access to Spotify Social (allows users to post playlists to Facebook) .  There will be no time limits as part of the introductory offer but eventually there will be a cap of 20 hrs per month.
  2. $4.99 Per Month:  Ad free service and access to Spotify Radio mode.
  3. $9.99 Per Month:  Mobile access to playlists, access to offline modes for desktop & mobile devices and access to exclusive content

All Things Digital Article

Washington Post Article

Award winning social music service, Spotify is finally heading state side.  The announcement has been highly expected  after the company completed a $100MM round of funding and secured music rights deals with EMI and SONY in recent months.

The service provides streaming music on consumers’ PC’s and mobile devices in a radio-like fashion while at the same time integrating social elements.  Spotify already has 10MM users in Europe (1MM of which are paid subscriptions).  In addition, the company is rumored to be working on a streaming music deal with Facebook.

“We have updated our landing page in advance of launch. Still no specifics on the launch I’m afraid, just We’re working hard to launch the service in the US as soon as possible. All we can say right now is watch this space!” said a Spotify representative according to Mashable.com