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Rdio subscription service now open for business

Rdio is a desktop and mobile music subscription service that competes with the likes of Rhapsody and Napster. It is now available across the U.S. and Canada.


Music subscription service Rdio first gained attention back in June when Kazaa founders originally announced it as their latest foray into the digital music space. Now, the service has come flying out of private beta and is tempting residents of the U.S. and Canada with tiered subscription pricing that allows unlimited streaming from a catalog containing more than 7 million tracks (compared to more than 10 million for Rhapsody).

Rdio's pricing is on par with Rhapsody, although there is a lower cost option for those who don't need on-the-go use. $4.99 per month will get you Rdio access on any Internet-connected desktop or laptop computer, while $9.99 per month upgrades the service to a mobile plan that's accessible from Android devices or the iPhone 4. As with Rhapsody, Rdio allows song caching (for offline playback) on the iPhone 4.0 OS. The new service is a bit ahead of the game on the Android side, allowing you to save songs on that platform as well. In addition, Rdio takes a page out of the Zune Social playbook by offering an interactive element that allows users to recommend songs to their friends.

A cursory glance at the Web interface and mobile apps shows a polished, visually appealing experience. Stay tuned for a more in-depth review on Rdio in the coming weeks.