The last big keynote of SXSWi was supposed to see Spotify CEO Daniel Ek announce the streaming music service finally coming to the U.S. But no. Instead, Spotify still seems to be struggling with the task of getting all the record labels, music publishers, and collecting societies on board. U.S. Spotify? Don’t hold your breath.
According to CNET, Ek didn’t announce a timeline for launch, instead saying:
The most important thing for us when it comes to the U.S. launch is the fact that we want to build the best product that we can. Here you have to strike deals with almost 5,000 different publishers, and then the collecting societies and then the labels, but the big thing for us now is just working on the next generation of Spotify and getting it out there.
Ek did state that Spotify currently boasts around 7 million users, 320,000 of which pay for the service so as to avoid advertising. Interestingly, when the crowd was asked how many of them had tried Spotify, the majority raised their hands, implying that many U.S.-based users are already finding ways to beat the location limits.