US subscribers to music service Rhapsody passes 1-million mark


LOS ANGELES — Digital music service Rhapsody says it has passed a million paying subscribers in the U.S.

That keeps it in the lead as the most popular subscription service in the country, the company said Thursday. The Seattle-based company turned 10 years old this month.

Rhapsody allows subscribers to listen to as much music as they want for a monthly fee — US$10 on all devices or US$5 on computers only. Rhapsody also offers a free trial period that includes use on mobile devices.

Rhapsody’s subscriber count had hovered around 800,000 for years, but several recent developments re-ignited the business.

In August, its service began being bundled into a cellphone plan for Android phone users on carrier MetroPCS. The plan includes unlimited data, talk, text and music for US$60 a month.

In October, it gained other subscribers through its purchase of Napster from Best Buy.

Still, it faces tough competition from new entrant Spotify, the Swedish music service that launched in the U.S. in July. Spotify says it has 2.5 million paying subscribers worldwide.