DENVER (Billboard) - "Ad-supported free digital music service SpiralFrog is leaping closer to going live.
The company has initiated a private beta launch in Canada and the United States, inviting select media and other outlets to test the service and provide feedback.
The move puts to rest many questions about the company's viability. When original CEO Robin Kent and a number of directors left in the spring, rampant speculation suggested the service would never see the light of day.
SpiralFrog founder Joe Mohen said he expects to emerge from the private beta for a public launch by the end of the summer. But the company has missed launch dates before. An initial launch date of December 2006 was pushed to this spring.
Based on the features of the beta site, however, it's clear that SpiralFrog has kept busy in the meantime. But while many music industry analysts and insiders express optimism over the potential for ad-supported free music, it's far too early to declare this frog a prince." continue....