SoundCloud has launched a new subscription service in the US, as it looks to take on rival streaming services. SoundCloud Go is available from $9.99 per month and offers an ad-free experience with more features and access to a larger music catalogue.
SoundCloud Go offers uninterrupted listening of over 125 million tracks from some 12 million artists, whilst also introducing an offline listening mode. The service is currently rolling out in the US and will reach other global markets later in 2016.
SoundCloud has spent several years trying to bring a paid model to fruition in order to monetise its huge music catalogue. The company has faced problems with the music industry for hosting songs that violated copyright laws and contained "unlicensed" samples and has since then embarked on a massive signing push to bring record labels on board.
The new, paid-for service offers SoundCloud subscribers more licensed content from major and independent labels alike, aligning the brand into direct running with rival services such as Spotify, Tidal and Apple Music.
Subscribers can enjoy a 30-day free trial of SoundCloud Go, after which Android and web users will be charged $9.99 per month, with Apple users paying $12.99. Current subscribers to SoundCloud's Pro Unlimited service will also receive a discounted rate of $4.99 per month for the first six months of their SoundCloud Go subscription.
Alexander Ljung, SoundCloud founder and CEO, said in a press release: "SoundCloud Go represents our vision of the future of music streaming: a platform for creators to collaborate on; for fans to discover the latest tracks, enjoy legendary music and connect with their favourite artists; and for our unique creative community to have the opportunity to be paid for their work.
"We are proud to offer the ultimate music streaming choice for both artists and fans and, together with the music industry, enable artists at all stages of their careers to be heard on SoundCloud."