Music Lovers, Take Note: Rdio Debuts Android App (Bonus: 2,000 Invites)

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It’s only been a couple of weeks since Rdio launched in the US and I started using it, and I’m already pretty sure I’ll be hooked for a long, long time – and I’ve tested a bunch of online music buying, sharing and streaming services in the past few years so that’s saying something. Check out Erick’s review if you’re interested in learning more about the service.

Anyway, if you’re a music fan and a proud owner of an Android-powered smartphone, today’s a good day. The startup, which was founded and financially backed by Skype, Kazaa and Joost founders Niklas Zennström and Janus Friis, has just announced that its oft-requested Android application is now available, albeit in beta form.

If you have an iPhone or iPod touch, you’re all set already. If you carry around an Android-powered handset, all you need is an invite for Rdio to get cracking. Were you too slow to take advantage when we offered you 1,000 trial accounts? We hear you: another 2,000 TechCrunch readers can sign up for an invite to Rdio right here.

The free Android app lets you do much of the same as its counterpart for the iPhone; it lets you browse and listen to the collection and playlists you’ve stored in the cloud using Rdio. You can also search for (and play) a couple millions of songs, and sync music – meaning full songs, full albums and playlists – to listen to when you’re offline.

Yet, as mentioned, the app is in beta, which Rdio warns about in its blog post:

Major functionality is available, and we’ve tested it on a variety of devices and versions of Android, but there’s still more to do — we wanted to get it in your hands as soon as possible. We’ll keep working on it so expect frequent updates, and don’t install it if you can’t live with the occasional quirk or even crash.

I’ve run into a bug or two with the iPhone app and Web service as well, so I indeed wouldn’t recommend to use Rdio as a 100% replacement for iTunes or whatever you currently use for buying and listening to music on your computer. I do think, however, that services like Rdio (and Spotify, Pandora, MOG, We7 and many others) will be shaping the future of digital music purchasing and listening in the next few years, so make sure to give it a whirl if you consider yourself an early adopter.

To download, just go to the Rdio website or click this link from your Android smartphone. The app should work fine on devices running Android 1.6 or higher, but the startup promises it will support phones running Android 1.5 soon, too.

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