Spotify upgrades iPhone & iPad app with data-saving mode, new options for free listeners

Posted:
in iPhone
Spotify on Tuesday announced the gradual rollout of a redesigned mobile interface, accompanied by other improvements -- with a particular focus on the ad-supported free listeners who make up the majority of the service's audience.

Spotify's 2018 iPhone redesign


Free listeners will now be prompted to pick favorite artists as soon as they sign up, which are used to generate a set of customized playlists. And while most playlists will still be shuffle-only without a Premium plan, 15 of them -- among them Discover Weekly and Release Radar -- should let people play tracks on-demand.

For all listeners, the app will offer song suggestions under the search bar when building a playlist. Recommendations were already present, but buried towards the bottom of a playlist's page where they're less likely to be noticed.

Another global improvement is a data-saving mode which can cut bandwidth consumption up to 75 percent. Spotify said it's optimizing streaming and the app as a whole in order to reduce data and battery demands.

The overhauled app is rolling out worldwide in "coming weeks."

Though Spotify doesn't make as much money from it, the existence of a free tier may be the service's main weapon against Apple Music, which doesn't offer any free listening past a three-month trial. Apple has over 40 million subscribers and may even overtake Spotify in the U.S. this summer -- but the latter has more than 159 million listeners, about 71 million of them on Premium.

Free customers have several incentives to upgrade to Premium, which typically costs $9.99 per month. The plan is ad-free, absent of shuffling restrictions, and optionally offers higher-quality sound. In some cases Premium is required to stream to external devices like the Amazon Echo.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 6
    MacProMacPro Posts: 17,868member
    Mods please delete this as totally OT but had to say ...  I'm surprised SmugMug taking over Flickr hasn't been mentioned yet I'd rate it far more important than many things in AI right now.  Will our beloved Flickr free accounts soon cost us?   
  • Reply 2 of 6
    KuyangkohKuyangkoh Posts: 254member
    Sorry, insignificant to me....don’t use thier services 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 6
    Kuyangkoh said:
    Sorry, insignificant to me....don’t use thier services 
    Do you comment on every topic that is insignificant to you?
    propod
  • Reply 4 of 6
    boltsfan17boltsfan17 Posts: 2,105member
    MacPro said:
    Mods please delete this as totally OT but had to say ...  I'm surprised SmugMug taking over Flickr hasn't been mentioned yet I'd rate it far more important than many things in AI right now.  Will our beloved Flickr free accounts soon cost us?   
    I would much rather have SmugMug running Flickr than Verizon. 
    chasm
  • Reply 5 of 6
    chasmchasm Posts: 1,083member
    I guess Spotify believes that making the free experience even better will tempt people to jump in on the paid plan, but to me it seems like you’re giving them incentive to stay on the free tier — which is bizarre, as the company really hasn’t found a way to make any money yet. Will see if this changes things, but Apple Music has been growing at a faster clip then Spotify for quite some time now, and at some point – not that far off — Apple Music may will surpass Spotify in paid subscribers. It’s also worth noting that earlier reporting suggests that many if not most of Spotify’s “premium“ subscribers aren’t paying full price.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 6
    linkmanlinkman Posts: 874member

    Though Spotify doesn't make as much money from it loses boatloads of money from it, the existence of a free tier may be the service's main weapon against Apple Music, which doesn't offer any free listening past a three-month trial.
    Fixed the original article. Now Spotify is in the position to lose money faster than ever with all of the free subscribers it will gain from this. What insane VCs are pouring money into Spotify?
    watto_cobra
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