SpiralFrog Finally Ready To Leap
August 8, 2007 at 5:45 AM (PT)
Earlier this year, SPIRALFROG looked like a goner after infighting triggered an executive exodus. But the company that made a splash last summer by promising to offer free, ad-supported music is finally ready to launch. Founder JOE MOHEN confirmed on TUESDAY to CNET NEWS.COM that SPIRALFROG has quietly invited a select number of users to test a beta version of the site.
MOHEN said SPIRALFROG will offer 700,000 songs at launch and be the first ad-supported site to offer video for download. He estimated that SPIRALFROG will be ready for a public launch sometime before the end of the year.
SPIRALFROG missed its DECEMBER 2006 launch date. Soon after, CEO ROBIN KENT walked out following a rift with MOHEN and the board. KENT's executive team soon followed, and to many observers, SPIRALFROG's free-music model looked like a failed experiment.
Eight months later, Mohen said the site is ready to compete.
The site has a relatively small music library. Only UNIVERSAL MUSIC GROUP, the largest of the six top record labels, has agreed to a licensing deal with SPIRALFROG. This means SPIRALFROG is offering 700,000 songs while most of the top music services, such as APPLE, YAHOO and RHAPSODY, offer at least 2 million tracks.