Music streaming giant Spotify might be planning gated content for Spotify Premium customers, in a move to attract more paying customers to the service.
The news comes two months before music licenses expire. Spotify apparently has no deals with the music industry set in stone for 2016. The pressure from Apple Music, Tidal and the music industry might lead to Spotify bending the knee.
Spotify lost an important negotiator for the deals, Ken Parks, earlier this month. This may have also had an effect on the company’s ability to grab deals with the music industry.
Internally, Spotify is still deliberating over what to change, with several options on the table. New albums from top artists might be locked for free customers, having to pay a small amount to listen to it or subscribe.
The current growth of Spotify shows a 1:4 split between premium and ad-supported customers. By 2016, Spotify should hit 100 million users, but under the current system it will be lucky to reach 35 million paid subscribers.
With these new changes, we may see a small step down in the amount of free users, but a large growth in the paid subscribers. Even with the 380 per cent increase in ad revenue from Spotify in early 2015, a paid subscriber generates much more income per month for the music streaming service.
Daniel Ek, the CEO of Spotify, is apparently not happy with having to make these changes. He would rather see the streaming service continue to grow as it does now, but that appears to be a non-factor with all the changes in the industry over the past 12 months.