Rdio Announces Family Subscription Plans

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Rdio has announced a new subscription option for their web and mobile music streaming platform. Previously, Rdio users had only two plans to choose from: a $4.99 web-only access plan and $9.99 web and mobile option. (There is a free version of Rdio that only lets users stream song samples.)

Now, Rdio will offer an “Unlimited Family” subscription plan, allowing users to share accounts. The plan is the first of its type for music streaming services on the Internet, and further details about how the plan will work are forthcoming.

With the recent launch of Spotify in the U.S., Rdio is definitely feeling the heat from the competition.

Spotify has the same pricing as Rdio – $4.99 for web; $9.99 for web and mobile – but also has a free version that lets users stream full songs. (Currently, Spotify’s free version in the U.S. is on an invitation-only basis. Users who sign up for a Spotify Premium account are allowed to invite 10 friends.)

Since Spotify’s launch, many users have begun flocking to the service like a new toy, though there have been qualms with both Spotify and Rdio.

There are some gaping holes in Rdio’s catalog, such as Gillian Welch, though the not-yet one-year-old service continues to beef up their offerings.

Rdio offers an album-centric view, compared with Spotify’s playlist-centric service. When you log in to Spotify, you can’t see what albums you’ve recently listened to, while Rdio shows a dashboard of “heavy rotation” albums.

While both services have some nice social features, Spotify seems to currently eclipse Rdio in this department. Spotify’s “inbox” feature, which lets a user easily send a song to another user, is one of the great, and simple, innovations in music sharing.

Rdio CEO Drew Larner issued a “state of the industry” statement two weeks ago, just before Spotify’s launch.

“Consumers have many options,” Larner wrote. “But we think they’ll ultimately gravitate to a service that fulfills the promise of what true social music discovery can be.”

Let the games begin.

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