Music lovers have another outlet for free music now that Spotify.com has finally launched in the United States.
In the past, I’ve told you about early free music services like Pandora.com and GrooveShark.com. But the Europeans have long had access to Spotify, which I believe is vastly superior to either of those other services. Now we’re finally getting a chance to check it out after rumbling about a stateside launch for several years.
Spotify is a streaming service that follows the freemium model. You can choose the free, ad-supported model that’s by invite only at the moment. If you prefer not to wait for that invite, there’s also a $5/month service that’s free of ads, and a premium service for $10/month with no ads that lets you listen to unlimited music on a mobile device.
I recently got my free invitation to Spotify’s basic model while I was with my brother. His favorite song is “Hotel California” so I punched that into Spotify and about 40 different versions of the song came up. The service boasts a catalog of 15 million songs. I was impressed because there was no buffering of the track we selected. It just started playing.
If you stop paying the monthly fee, the music vanishes from your computer or mobile device. It’s like you can rent an unlimited amount of songs as long as you’re a subscriber. Check it out.