updated 02:15 pm EST, Tue December 7, 2010
Spotify vague on US date but denies Apple effect
Spotify chief Daniel Ek in his interview at D: Dive Into Mobile dropped his aims of a US launch in 2010. He was still hopeful for a US deal but now "can't commit to a specific date." If and when it launched, it would cost about $10 per month, or less than the 10 euros paid in Spotify's existing countries.
He denied, however, any direct knowledge of Apple trying to stifle deals by painting a dire picture of how Spotify would affect the US. Ek had heard of it because he "read the news" but didn't have any knowledge. "I don't actually try to focus on what Apple is doing, or what others are doing," he said. "I am, first and foremost, a user."
Concerns had reportedly come from Apple that Spotify would hurt music royalties by leading many to simply use the free, ad-supported version and might not make up for pay-per-track royalties. American labels themselves have publicly objected to deals in the US, even when they already had deals in Europe.
Ek nonetheless rejected the idea that his service would come into the US as a subscription-only plan. Listeners can already get music for free from YouTube and elsehwere, so there was no reason not to have a free option. Music had to "flow like water," he said.