Spotify limits free access, still wants you to listen to music

If you enjoy Spotify and you don’t currently pay for it, it looks like your enjoyment is going to come crashing to an end after the founder of the ad-supported music service announced that the company would be restricting access in the future.

“Spotify’s aim from the very beginning was to make music on-demand available to all. To give you the power to listen to, discover, share and manage your music the way you want to - simpler, faster, better - while making sure the artists whose music we all love continue to see the benefits as we grow,” Daniel Ek starts out on a blog post on the company’s website.

According to Ek new Spotify users who sign up before the 1 May will be able to enjoy carte blanche access – with ads – for the first 6 months before being restricted to just 10 hours a month thereafter.

However those who sign up after the 1 May will only be able to play each track for free up to a total of 5 times.

Users who signed up after the beginning of November will see these changes applied 6 months after the time they set up their Spotify account.

The idea is clearly to get you enjoying it before asking you to pay a £10 a month subscription, which gives you further benefits like listening to music on the go, or on third party devices like a Sonos music system.

‘The changes we’re having to make will mainly affect heavier Spotify Free and Open users, as most of you use Spotify to discover music – on average over 50 new tracks per month, even after a year,” says Ek in justification of the new approach. “For anyone who thinks they might reach these limits, we hope you’ll consider checking out our Unlimited and Premium services, neither of which will be affected, plus we have a 7-day free trial for Spotify Premium that we’d love you to try.”

Why the changes?

Spotify says that in doing so means that they can “continue making Spotify available to all in the long-term,” and although Ek doesn’t say so specifically, it’s clear that if the company is to launch in the US it’s got to limit the amount of streaming that it’s got to pay for.

Of course Ek finishes by teasing us:

“We’ll be bringing out some awesome new features as well as significant improvements over the coming months, which will make the Spotify experience even better.”

What those new features are will have to wait and see.

What features would you like added?



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