Rhapsody hits 1 million paid subscribers; prez shaves head

Company says that an average of 10 million songs per day are being streamed to its users.

Rhapsody President Jon Irwin before and after shaving his head. Rhapsody

Rhapsody has capped off a big year by going bald.

The streaming-music company announced today that it now has over 1 million paid subscribers. Its growth has pushed the average number of songs played per day to 10 million, the company added.

To celebrate the achievement, Rhapsody President Jon Irwin shaved his head to make good on his promise to employees if the company hit 1 million paid subscribers.

"We've accomplished quite a bit over the past decade, so it's no small statement to say that 2011 was probably our biggest year yet," Irwin said in a statement. "I told our team that when we topped one million paid subscribers, I'd shave my head...it was probably the best free haircut I've ever had."

Rhapsody allows people to stream a catalog of over 13 million songs to the mobile devices, PCs, and several other products. The service, which is available on a total of 60 devices, costs customers $10 per month.

Although the milestone is a big one, Rhapsody still finds itself far behind its chief competitor, Spotify. That company announced last month that it now has 2.5 million paid subscribers worldwide. It hit 1 million paid subscribers in March.

In its efforts to grow, Rhapsody announced late last month that it had acquired iconic music service Napster's subscribers and assets . Whether those two companies will be able to come closer to matching Spotify, however, remains to be seen. But Rhapsody's president said good times are ahead.

"This has been an incredible year, marked by several notable achievements, and we're entering 2012 with big plans to bring music to even more people, in more places," Irwin said.

 

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