When the gods dance...

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Universal Music Group launching its own Spotify playlist service?

Universal Music Group launching its own Spotify playlist service?

Posted: 27 Jul 2011 05:05 PM PDT

Universal Music Group is launching its own music playlist service called Digster powered by Spotify’s free usage tier, reports Billboard.

Digster, which is scheduled to go live in the U.S. Wednesday, gets music editors to create playlists just like any Spotify user, but adds its own layer of editorial influence and discovery. Those that create the playlists are either music artists or Universal Music employees, according to the report. The music isn’t limited to songs affiliated or owned by Universal. Playlists will feature songs from a variety of artists regardless of the record label.

Universal Music Group Distribution hasn’t responded to VentureBeat regarding the U.S. launch of the new playlist service. However, the company has already launched sites in FinlandSwedenNorway and theU.K.

Users can access Digster through Facebook, Spotify (both premium and free versions) or by creating a Digster account. As for the playlists, they can be accessed through the Spotify service or by downloading them on iTunes.

Universal Music Group signed a licensing deal with Spotify in June 2011, which marked the beginning of the relationship between the companies.

For Spotify, this is certainly a good deal because it encourages people with influence in the music world to create and share playlists on its platform. Universal, on the other hand, gains an impressive new avenue to promote music and artists on its label.

The news comes at a time when other, most established streaming music services are vying for attention in the midst of Spotify’s highly visible U.S. launch. For example, Pandora Radio recently debuted a redesign of its website. Also Spotify competitor Rdio is planning to offer family plans of its streaming music service as well as an iPad application.

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