A month after announcing its expansion to Canada, Spotify has begun sending out invites to select potential users of the music streaming service. The Swedish startup confirmed to Billboard that invites have been going out, but refused to comment on the timing of a full-fledged launch in Canada.
“Congratulations — you’re in!” the email invite says, according to 9to5Mac. “You’ve been chosen to try Spotify in Canada before everyone else!”
In June, a Spotify source told us that the service’s Canadian launch was not far off, but declined to offer specifics, other than that they “want to bring Spotify to everyone everywhere.”
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Earlier this year, Google Play expanded in the country, which has been a tough market to break into for streaming services. In 2010, Pandora declined launch in Canada because Re:Sound, the country’s royalty agency, wanted to charge 45 percent of the site’s gross revenues.
Thanks to the lack of competition, Songza, a U.S.-based playlist curation site, has gained a foothold in the streaming market since launching in 2012. Google announced its purchase of Songza in July. Other competing streaming services include Deezer, Rdio, Sony Music Unlimited, and Xbox Music.
According to The Globe and Mail, Copyright Board of Canada ruled in May that streaming services should pay a little over 10 cents in royalties for every 1,000 plays. Whether that played a role in Spotify’s decision to move in is unclear.