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Spotify to launch invite-only service in US

Britney Spears is gagging for it

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Spotify is following the current trend among Web2.0 companies to lure new customers in by offering online services on an invite-only basis with the launch of the music streaming site in the US later today.

It's also a good way of building up a list of email addresses that Spotify can hoard for marketing purposes down the line.

The Swedish company has been trying for years to break into the US market. It finally inked deals with the Big Four record labels recently, allowing the firm to go Stateside.

But rather than just open the service to all-comers in that market, the company instead is going down the invite-only approach, presumably in the hope of creating lots of buzz around the product, which will soon be competing with Apple's iCloud effort.

"The award-winning digital music service loved by millions of Europeans will become available tomorrow morning in the United States by invitation and subscription," said Spotify in a canned statement.

It's expected that the US version of the service will offer the same free and payment options as the European-flavoured, DRM-wrapped, music-streaming product.

The ad-supported free service has a 20-hours monthly limit, then there's the unlimited and premium options at the business end, where Spotify will be pushing for customers to sign-up to subscriptions.

One final, very important note: one-time pop princess Britney Spears can't wait.

"So excited Spotify is FINALLY coming to the US tomorrow! Getting my playlists ready now... - Brit," she tweeted yesterday.

Oh, and Mark Zuckerberg may well be preparing to turn the amp up to 11 later today, too. ®

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