During a lavish press conference in New York this part week, Spotify’s CEO Daniel Ek announced free streaming on iOS and Android devices.
The free version will sport advertisements, but they won’t be as apparent and annoying as the ones that you experience on similar services. And sadly, listening to songs won’t be the same as the premium version where you are able to do so in demand. Instead, you’ll have to make do with play-listing songs, which isn’t really a terrible thing! It’s nice to see some leeway for a change.
While available for smartphones, you’ll also be able to access Spotify’s new service on tablets as well. The setup will be a little bit different to suit larger displays, although everything else remains similar to what you’ll be able to do on a smartphone. One thing that the company’s chief has stated is that they’re now primarily working on making everything mobile as opposed to PC-orientated.
“Our very clear mission is getting more people to access and discover more great music,” Daniel said. “Along with more free users there will be more subscribers, and that means more revenue back to the industry.”
You can say that Spotify is obviously trying to get even more people using its service, hence the announcement of free streaming, though recent stats show that people are generally still interested in purchasing music from the likes of iTunes. According to NPD Group market advisory service, who track sales, even though there’s a huge surge in popularity for music streaming services, per-buyer spending on downloads rose 6 percent back in 2012.
“The thing that people often forget is that Spotify customers are actually the best iTunes customers out there,” says Russ Crupnick, senior vice president of industry analysis at NPD Group.
It seems that Spotify is only trying to rival similar products, using Pandora, iHearRadio and iTunes Radio as good examples. They are aiming to get users using these services signing up and using their own – free streaming is the main weapon here.
This all sounds very simple, but current stats state that Pandora has counted 72.4 million active listeners (an 8.4 percent share of radio listening in the U.S.), with Spotify, in the past, claiming 24 million active users and 6 million subscribers – not the best when compared to Pandora.
Spotify’s change in direction isn’t just working more towards a mobile goal because they also announced at the event that their service will be launching in 20 new regions, bringing the total up to 55. Also, it’s been confirmed that they’re still the number one music streaming service worldwide, despite radio services such as Pandora proving to be a huge threat.
You can download the new service from both Apple’s App Store and the Google’s Play Store, with it expected to launch on Windows Phone and BlackBerry within the next few days – possibly weeks.