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Nokia US launches free music streaming to boost sales

Nokia needs more US customers after losing $4.9 billion switching to a Microsoft-based smartphone.

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American users of the Nokia Lumia smartphone can now use a new music streaming service. Nokia is courting US customers to boost lagging sales. (Sean Gallup/AFP/Getty Images)

Music streaming services iTunes, Spotify, and Pandora will have some competition now that smartphone maker Nokia has announced it's launching its own music service that will work exclusively on its Lumia handsets, reports Bloomberg. 

Nokia is trying to boost lagging sales in the United States after it lost customers to Apple and devices running Google’s Android software. 

"We have worked extra hard to ensure our service meets the expectations of the demanding, active, and inspired music fans in the USA," Jyrki Rosenberg, vice president of entertainment at Nokia, told CNET.

"I would like to challenge everyone to try Nokia Music and see just how easy and enjoyable the service is to use."

International Lumia users have been enjoying music from Rihanna, Lana Del Rey and Lady Gaga since Nokia World launched last year, reports Engadget, but American phones have been silent until now. 

Nokia, based in Finland, has identified the U.S. as a key market to launch its global comeback, reports Bloomberg. The smartphone maker is also launching its first devices based around the mobile version of Microsoft's Windows 8 operating system on Wednesday. 

Over the next three years, Nokia hopes to overtake iOS, from Apple, as the No. 2 operating system behind Android, from Google, reports the New York Times.

Nokia lost $4.9 billion since February 2011 after announcing a switch to a Microsoft-based smartphone. 

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/business/technology/120904/nokia-us-launches-free-music-streaming-boost-sales