Spotify makes changes to policy in an effort to increase membership

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As the world’s leading music streaming platform, Spotify continues to increase its influence globally with every passing year. That being said, there have recently been reports around Apple Music overtaking Spotify in the future in terms of users, particularly in locations like the US, where Apple Music is predicted to overtake Spotify by the end of the year. While Spotify do appear to be struggling to retain their overall dominance in the global music streaming market, they have been making plenty of changes to ensure that they continue to build their audience. Recently, the global giant increased the value of its platform for unpaid users, offering features that were previously only available to paying users.

Upgrades to free platform

Before these changes were made, non-paying subscribers were offered a very limited platform, with simply the ability to listen to tracks of their choosing with many adverts slotted in between. However, this has now changed and even users who do not pay for Spotify premium will experience a more tailored service. Now, even basic accounts will receive tailored recommendations, enabling everyone to use Spotify to discover brand new music as well as listening to the artists they already enjoy. This move has been implemented in hopes to increase the number of users signing up for membership and will undoubtedly result in even more people around the globe signing up for a free account.

Benefits for artists

From an artist perspective, this change in Spotify’s policy will make music more accessible than ever around the globe. With non-paying members now able to discover new artists much more easily, this can only provide positive results for artists. Now, your music stands more chance than ever of being recommended to huge audiences, resulting in increased exposure and in turn, increased streams. Originally, users would have been forced to search for music they already enjoyed, rather than receiving tailored suggestions or recommendations for brand new tracks that fit with their taste, limiting the possibility for discovery.

Low data mode

Spotify has now also introduced a low data mode which will enable users to consume far less mobile data when using the app on the go. The new mode will allow users to use up to 75% less data, making using the app without wifi more cost-effective than ever before. Ultimately this increase in accessibility will lead to more usage of the app overall, resulting in more streams and therefore increased revenue for artists worldwide. Any scheme that increases use of Spotify ultimately benefits artists in the long run.

Long-term plans

With Spotify making such drastic changes to the platform, it is clear that they intend to remain on top of the streaming market and are not willing to let Apple Music exceed their number of users. By making Spotify more enjoyable for free users and increasing the number of people signing up to join, this should provoke even more users to in turn sign up for premium membership, resulting positively for Spotify and its artists alike.
In the future, it looks uncertain whether Spotify will retain its position as the leading music streaming service, or whether Apple Music will finally take the top spot. The industry is currently undergoing a massive shift as more and more competition arises to compete for listeners. As the platform that revolutionized the way fans consume music, Spotify instantly became the most dominant force in the streaming industry, but the level of control Spotify has over the market is certainly not guaranteed to last forever.

The truth is, most other streaming platforms are involved in other projects that bring in extra profit. Apple, for example, bring in a huge level of revenue through their product sales. Amazon is in the same position, benefitting from a huge amount of product sales as well as revenue from its Amazon Prime video streaming service. Spotify’s policy means that it gives 80% of profits back to labels and artists, leaving only 20% for Spotify itself. Therefore, it seems likely that Spotify may venture into other territories in the future. For the time being though, the platform will continue to shift its offering in an effort to garner more paid members and increased free subscribers. Looking at the positive aspects of Spotify, particularly following the extensive features now offered to non-paying users, the platform is certainly actively decreasing music piracy. With users able to effortlessly hear music for free through Spotify simply by agreeing to hear the occasional advert, the platform acts as a massive deterrent and takes away much of the motivation for piracy. Naturally, this is also beneficial for artists, who will undoubtedly be experiencing less piracy around their releases, even though revenue earned through streams is less substantial than revenue secured by a physical album release.

As the streaming market continues to shift, there is more motivation than ever for leading organizations to offer more to their users in order to stay ahead. This is highly beneficial for listeners and artists alike, as it means that the services available will consistently strive to improve and compete. Music is becoming more accessible than ever before and streaming has undoubtedly played a major role, allowing users to listen to anything they want for a monthly fee or free of charge when listening on an ad-based platform. Ultimately, the industry will continue to improve and encourage more revenue for artists and platforms will continue to offer a more user-friendly experience, resulting in more streams and benefiting artists around the globe.