More Spotify users are choosing mobile for their listening pleasure. Right now, 52 percent of the user base listen to music from their mobile devices, rather than from the computer. It is a major shift over the last few years, and likely based on the company’s decision to offer a free version for mobile.
Until last year, users would only get access to Spotify for free for 48 hours. After that, they would have to subscribe. All that really did was make people choose against the service, and they stuck to the computer version. Seeing this happen, the company decided to offer a limited free service for users, encouraging them to sign up to the premium option.
Mobile users now get access to listen to their music—and listen to their own playlists—but they cannot pick and choose the songs they want to listen to. They have a limited number of skips and must listen on shuffle. There are also adverts played between a certain number of songs.
This does not seem to bother that many users. There are now 60 million people listening to music through the site, with 15 million of them paying for the premium version. Over half of that number opts to listen on mobile devices, accepting the limitations. It certainly shows that the move to offer a free option for mobile was a good move.
As more Spotify users choose mobile for their listening pleasure, there is new competition. French firm Deezer has announced that it is acquiring Muve Music. Both offer a streaming music service, and the acquisition makes Muve Music the number two streaming service in the U.S. when considering paying members.
It could mean some serious competition for Spofity, which currently has around six million paying subscribers in the United States alone. Deezer is attempting to add two million more subscribers to its paying service. This may be something Spotify wants to consider when it comes to adapting its mobile offering further.
However, the number one music streaming service may not need to worry. The user base is growing rapidly. Towards the middle of 2014, the company reportedly had 10 million paying subscribers, with 40 million users in total. By November, that total user base had grown to 50 million.
It was a surprise for some in November. This was around the time that Taylor Swift removed her music from Spotify, followed by a number of other artists. It seems that people found other tracks that they were happy to listen to anyway.
Up to date reports show that Spotify’s user base is now up to 60 million in total, with 15 million of them paying for the premium version. This allows users access to better quality music and no adverts in between tracks. Mobile users also get to skip tracks and select the ones that they would like to listen to, instead of being forced on a shuffle. A total of 42 percent of users opt for smartphones and 10 percent use tablets, meaning that more users are currently choosing mobile to listen to music on Spotify.
Opinion by Alexandria Ingham
Photo by Johan Larsson – Flickr License