The world's largest music streaming service has gone live in South Africa, a day before the company is due to hold a press conference to announce its local launch.
Apple is locked in race for subscribers with Amazon.com, Alphabet's Google and others as streaming music becomes the dominant form of paid music consumption. Google Play Music doesn't release information on its number of paid subscribers. It offers new subscribers a three-month free trial.
"Over the past few months, we've confirmed our beliefs that listeners care deeply about the content on Spotify-they want the data to be useful and accurate", a company spokesperson told Variety. While, the Premium option features no adverts, offline listening, unlimited skips, high-quality audio and shuffle play.
Spotify launched in 2008 and is now available in more than 60 countries, but a big question mark over its model remains whether it can find enough subscribers and other revenue to pay for the mountain of royalty fees to record labels and artists.
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Spotify Premium adds Extreme quality streaming at 320 Kbps, which can make for better, more detailed audio output if you use high-end headphones or speakers.
"We believe South Africa is a wonderful country to start in", Spotify Managing Director in Middle East and Africa Claudius Boller told Reuters on the sidelines of the launch.
To that end, Spotify quietly opened up Line-In, a music metadata editor, to all of its users this month. You can listen to any song, album or playlist on demand, or even control Spotify through the Quick Menu without interrupting the game. With a catalogue of over 35 million songs all available to both free users and subscribers, Spotify comes to South Africa offering the very best in both local and global music.