Rhapsody’s President: “This is the Year for Digital Music…”

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Is this the year it all starts to happen?

Well, according Rhapsody president Jon Irwin, the answer is most definitely ‘yes’.  “The steady subscriber growth we are seeing is testament to the fact that this is the year for digital music, and we congratulate Pandora on its IPO,” Irwin commented on an earlier story on Digital Music News.

How much growth?  Rhapsody subscribers now stand at 775,000, per January stats shared by Irwin.  That’s up about 100,000 since last April, and Irwin credits Pandora for driving some of that traffic.

The question is whether the ecosystem is getting healthier, with Pandora leading the charge.  Most are praising Pandora’s IPO as good news for the music industry, but will it suddenly breathe life into related models that involve subscription, downloads, and cloud-based access?  “Rhapsody placed its bet on subscription music nearly ten years ago, and this IPO demonstrates that more are deciding to ante up,” Irwin noted.  “Pandora has been great for our business, as it is the first stop in a musical journey that leads to a full premium on-demand experience.”