Spotify U.S. Launch Stalled Again

image from Spotify CEO Daniel Ek declined to comment on the U.S. launch of his company at the recent D:Dive into Mobile conference. This has led to speculation that the much hoped for arrival of Spotify might not be coming this year. The reason for the delay appears to be rooted in licensing and negotiation problems of the free side of the service. Ek said, however, that when it does launch here, the service will cost $10 a month and that free usage is limited to 20 hours.

Another comment worth noting from Ek reveals his continued optimism. He said that he thinks "music on the web will probably surpass the popularity of photos.”

At first, it's easy to brush this comment off as a reflection of what some believe is Ek's arrogance. Thought about more deeply, the assertion divulges Ek's longing for music to be woven into the fabric of the social web.

Images are predominately displayed at the top of the new Facebook profiles. It's clear that Ek foresees a future where a music player displaces the five-photo collage. The ability to share photos and view those of your friends fueled the growth of Facebook; it captured the essence of college. Had music been treated with the same importance as photos, Facebook would feel quite different.

Music would be at the forefront of the site.

While it's easy to post a music video and tell friends to check out it out a song, the ability to do so isn't baked into Facebook. Sure, they've experimented with displaying a social graph below artists on Pandora and there are many services that send music updates too Facebook, but there are many features that could be added. It would be interesting to view a social music experience that aligns more closely with Ek's vision. The fluidity of music has increased in recent years.

From Ek's perspective, music sharing will soon be placed at the forefront of our social networks. It will spill into our newsfeeds and be integrated into our profiles.

Will music ever displace photos on the social web?

(More: Billboard, Mashable)

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