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Rdio adds seven new countries to its free-music option

Music streaming service announces international expansion on the same day as a report that Spotify is getting ready to make a global push.


Continuing its recent push into international markets, Rdio announced today that it has expanded its free streaming music service in seven new countries, bringing its total global presence up to 24.

The free music option, which launched to its first international customers in January, is now available in Austria, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, and Mexico. The expansion comes on the same day that Bloomberg reported that music streaming rival Spotify was close to deals with record labels to expand its ad-supported mobile radio service outside the U.S.

Much like Pandora, Spotify's music service has advertisements seeded among songs. However, Rdio's ad-free service is free to new users for the first six months, after which time they will need to sign up for a subscription to continue using the service. Rdio also announced today it had extended its free Web offer to music fans in Brazil.

Rdio CEO Drew Larner said the company was developing "smarter tools" to improve the music discovery process.

"By opening the social circle to seven new international markets, we're making Rdio an increasingly global way to play, discover, and share music," he said in a statement.

Launched in the U.S. in 2010 as an alternative to other Internet music streaming services, Rdio offers access to a library of more than 18 million songs that can be listened to and shared across the Web, social networks, and mobile devices.

The service also launched an updated iOS app today that delivers a new look, including more prominent presentation of album art work and social features.