A year ago, Spotify officially announced its plans of expanding to India, and the company has finally made its way here. While Netflix is the most popular video streaming platform worldwide, Spotify holds the same title in the music streaming segment.
The company has the highest number of paying subscribers in the world and India is the 79th where Spotify has launched. It operates on a "freemium" model, meaning users can access all songs for free, but they're streamed at a lower quality and the app has ads to monetize the consumption. The motto is to convert free users to a paid subscription and in return offer more features like high-quality playback and no ads.
The service in India will come with more than four crore songs and 300 crore playlists offering Indian and international music, across moods and moments. The company has already partnered with T-Series and Sony for local licensing and is currently fighting in court against the Warner Music Group (WMG).
The app has built-in multilingual recommendations and specially curated playlists for listeners in India and new users can avail a 30-day trial of the Premium offering. To access, you can either visit the website or download the Android.
In terms of pricing, the simple one month plan costs just Rs 119 (US$ 1.67), compared to US$ 9.99 (Rs 700) in the United States. Spotify is offering a wide array of flexible subscription options, including a yearly plan that costs Rs 1,189.
If you don't want a recurring subscription, a top-up can be availed and it costs Rs 13 per day and can go up till Rs 719 for six months. The platform has also integrated local payment options like UPI and PayTM, in addition to debit and credit cards.
In comparison, Apple Music costs Rs 120 per month, JioSaavn is free for Jio users (limited period), and Google Play Music charges Rs 99 per month. Amazon Music comes bundled with Prime and costs Rs 1,000 per year (includes Prime Video).
While the platform is popular for its music collection and suggestive algorithm, it'll require a ton of local content to succeed in India. And Spotify says plans to solve this in a mutual way. "India has an incredibly rich music culture, and to best serve this market, we're launching a custom-built experience. Not only will Spotify bring Indian artists to the world, we will also bring the world's music to fans across India,” said Daniel Ek, Spotify's Founder and CEO.