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Spotify may soon restrict new albums to paid subscribers

by Jacob Kleinman | June 12, 2016June 12, 2016 6:00 am PDT

Spotify Press Announcement

Spotify may lead its music streaming rivals when it comes to subscription numbers, but the company has been struggling to land big new albums while Apple Music and Tidal continue to crank out exclusives. Now the Swedish company apparently has a solution.

Music Ally reports that Spotify is set to offer some music exclusively on its paid tier. That means it won’t be available for people who use the free ad-supported version of the service. Specifically, high-profile new albums could be restricted to paying subscribers.

Spotify allegedly considered making the switch earlier this year in an effort to offer Radiohead’s latest album at launch. It apparently wasn’t able to get the new technology working in time and won’t offer the new record until June 17. That’s over a month after it debuted on Apple Music and Tidal.

In a statement to Music Ally, Spotify’s communications chief Jonathan Prince essentially confirmed the rumors. “Some of the approaches we explored with Radiohead were new,” he said, “and we ultimately decided that we couldn’t deliver on those approaches technologically in time for the album’s release schedule.”

In the near future, Spotify may finally be ready to draw a line between paying and non-paying subscribers when it comes to what music is available. That may upset the people who still use its ad-supported service, but the company doesn’t seem to have much of a choice.

Music Ally

Jacob Kleinman

Jacob Kleinman has been working as a journalist online and in print since he arrived at Wesleyan University in 2007. After graduating, he took a...