Spotify Updating, Expanding Both Free and Premium Options

Anna Levin, HHS Kiss and Tell Co-Editor

Spotify’s upcoming update will expand the abilities of its free users, allowing them to listen to their favorite music more freely.

For the first time since its release in 2014, the music streaming app Spotify will revamp not only its looks, but also the way it offers music to its users. Spotify is making changes to both their free and premium versions to help collect more accurate data about their users and the kinds of music they listen to.

Spotify is the number one music streaming app on the market, according to Tech Radar, and will use its update to change their users listening experience. Before, only premium users had the  ability to listen to music with a limited number on skips or while being in shuffle mode. Now, free users will be able to experience some of the benefits of a premium account.

The update allows free users to listen to 15 Spotify created playlists including Daily Mix, Discover Weekly, and Today’s Top Hits that are custom made for the user based on what they listen to, according to CNet. The goal behind this new update is to expand Spotify’s data pool so it can provide music more in tune with their listeners style and stay one step ahead of competitors like Apple Music and Pandora. The 15 playlists, many of which have yet to be announced, will cover about 750 songs and nearly 40 hours of music, according to Engadget.

On top of the expanded number of artists free users can listen to, Spotify will also make its app more data friendly. Its new Data Saver Mode now uses up to 75% less data than before. The new feature will need to be manually enabled, according to PC Mag, but will benefit data-conscious music lovers.

The app is compatible with Android, Apple, and Google products, which gives a wide variety of people access to it. Spotify also runs on OS X and Windows computer servers, and it can also be played on web player, the browser version of the app that doesn’t require a download.

“Spotify’s best-kept secret is that if you run the app on a tablet, you can listen to any song you want, on demand. You’ll still have to contend with ads, but you’re not shoehorned into shuffle mode like on your phone,” according to CNet.

On top of all the changes Spotify made to the way its users listen to music, their new update will also be accompanied by a new look. The new app will feature the well known sleek background, but with more vibrant colored boxes and texts to attract the users eye. The larger, more readable fonts make the app easier to navigate and more user friendly.

The new update, however, isn’t perfect. Free users listening to music on the app will still have to deal with ads and the limited number of skips provided to them. They will also still be burdened by shuffle mode if they want to listen to music outside of the 15 pre-approved playlists.

Users listening to Spotify through web player will continue to lack the ability to listen to any of the podcasts available on the app. The web player feature also requires flash which limits the number of browsers listeners can use and can make the using Spotify much more difficult.

The new update will roll out in the next few weeks and will greatly benefit their free tier users. And while there are still downfalls to the limited number of skips, the interruption of ads, and the problems that come with its Web Player, the ability of free users to now listen to more music as they want for free is something that, as of right now on the market, is simply unheard of.

Currently, the Spotify app looks like this with key features like its sleek black background and bright white text. Spotify hasn’t updated its design since 2014. (Broadcaster/Anna Levin)