U.S. online music service Grooveshark has had its iPhone app pulled from the Apple app store, following a complaint from the U.K. office of Universal Music Group.

The announcement was made yesterday (Aug. 16) on Grooveshark's official blog www.blog.grooveshark.com. Universal would not comment when contacted by Billboard.biz.

A statement on the Grooveshark blog reads: "Earlier this afternoon, Apple sent us a letter notifying us that, due to a complaint they received from Universal Music Group U.K., Grooveshark for iPhone has been, strangely, pulled from the App Store."

The statement continued: "This comes as an absolute surprise to us, and we are not sleeping until we figure out exactly how to fix this and get Grooveshark for iPhone back in the App Store."

Universal Music Group filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against Grooveshark in January this year, which is still pending. It is believed that Universal U.K.'s complaint relates to the outstanding lawsuit.

Last week the Gainesville, Florida-based company, which launched in April 2008, settled its copyright dispute with Merlin (Billboard.biz, Aug. 9). In December 2009 Grooveshark inked a licensing agreement with EMI, following an earlier lawsuit from the British music major.

Although Grooveshark has direct license deals with hundreds of indie labels and thousands of artists, it does not have licensing agreements in place with any of the other three majors.

The Grooveshark iPhone app went live in the States Aug. 11. The app is not currently for sale in the United Kingdom.

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