The EMI Music Group's reportedly "almost there" U.S. licensing deal with Spotify may now be complete.
AllThingsD, citing "multiple sources" reported today that the deal is complete. If true, that would make the second major label licensing deal Spotify has completed in as many months of this new year. Now some may say this means the streaming music service is "halfway there" to a U.S. launch, but that's hardly the case.
Spotify would need at least one other major label to have the depth of catalog needed to go live, along with the indies. And when we say one, we mean Universal Music Group, not Warner Music Group, given UMG's dominant market share here.
This latest rumor comes on the heels of surprisingly positive comments made by WMG CEO Edgar Bronfman during the label's latest quarterly earnings report:
"We do see Spotify, and streaming revenue from services other than Spotify, to be meaningful in 2011," he said on the investor call. That's a year after saying freemium services were "not a net positive for the industry," so maybe there's a thaw there too.
Spotify claims 10 million users in the European countries where it is now live, approximately 750,000 of whom are paying one of the several premium tiers.
Meanwhile there's rumor making the rounds about the Google Music streaming service launching imminently as well. This one comes after the CEO of Motorola Mobility, during a keynote appearance showcasing the new Xoom tablet based on a new version of Androidm let lip that a music service is part of the new Android specs.
"If you look at the Google Mobile services today, there's a video service, there's a music service… that is, there will be a music service," Sanjay Jha said, according to The Guardian.
However there's still no indication Google has signed a single licensing deal with any label as of yet, although Billboard recently published a profile of the executives working at Google Music. Reps for the companies had not responded to Billboard's requests for comment at the time this article published.