Skype founders’ on-demand music service hits the US

6 Jan 2011

LAS VEGAS – Skype founders Niklas Zennstrom and Janus Friis’ new music start-up Rdio Unlimited has been launched to the US and Canada at the Consumer Electronics Show via a collaboration with Sonos.

Using the Sonos Multi-Room Music System, music lovers in the US and Canada can simultaneously play any artist, song or album from Rdio’s catalogue, on demand, in multiple rooms of the house.

The Skype founders’ music service has been described as a Twitter for music lovers.

Rdio’s social music-streaming service is the first to help users discover music through friends and influencers. Rdio takes the work out of deciding what to play next and connects the music in your web browser with your home and mobile phone. Users can play as many songs they want, anytime, anywhere.

“By adding Rdio to Sonos, our subscribers can now easily extend their Rdio Unlimited experience to their homes,” said Drew Larner, CEO of Rdio. “For Sonos customers, we bring a new and unique social approach to music discovery and sharing. At home, online, or on the move, the Rdio experience can now be with you everywhere you go.”

Rdio costs US$9.99 per month for unlimited Sonos, web and mobile access (including the ability to listen to music and playlists offline), and US$4.99 for web-only access. Completely ad-free, Rdio is currently available in the US and Canada.

A musical version of Twitter

“Our mission at Sonos is to fill every home with music by giving our customers access to all of the music on earth,” said Phil Abram, president, Sonos, Inc.

“We’re excited to offer an innovative service like Rdio which will provide them a premium, on-demand music experience for any room of their home.”

Rdio has music from all of the major labels: EMI Music, Sony Music Entertainment, Universal Music Group and Warner Music Group and thousands of top indie labels and distributors.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years