Earlier today, Spotify announced some massive changes to its service, moving the company into the device management space, rolling out its own download service and opening up its mobile applications to all users.
Spotify’s unveiling of its new music download service was perhaps the biggest announcement of them all, with what looks to be the Swedish company’s attempt at tipping the balance of power away from Apple and its iTunes platform. With its new service, users are able to transfer specific playlists that had been created within the desktop application, without having to buy each track separately. MP3 bundles, as they are called, provides Spotify users with competitive prices, starting at 50p per song.
With so many new features launching, you wouldn’t think that someone had to miss out, but one did.
That someone, or company, was 7Digital, the popular London-based music download service which previously powered Spotify’s “Buy-to-own” music download service. 7Digital, which already powers music downloads on RIM’s BlackBerry PlayBook, wasn’t surprised about Spotify’s announcement, in fact Spotify had notified the company of its plans over a year ago.
7Digital CEO Ben Drury, speaking about the Spotify deal, provided further insight:
We have known about Spotify’s plans to launch their own download store for over a year and we wish them well – it’s further evidence that the iTunes monopoly is being broken. It was an obvious step for them given the restriction of the new 5 lifetime plays per track and shows that the freemium model alone is unsustainable. It’s also certainly linked to their forthcoming US launch, which we now expect imminently.
7digital is not powering the new download offering from Spotify. There will be a minimal impact on 7digital, as we continue to focus on expanding our offering to new customers who want access to music anywhere, anytime, on mobile and connected devices.
Given Drury’s connection to Spotify in the past, the mention of an “imminent” launch in the US could hold some weight.
Importantly, customers who have previously purchased tracks from 7digital via the Spotify application will have full access to their tracks through 7digital.com, our mobile site and via our mobile apps for Android and BlackBerry. Previously purchased tracks and albums can be downloaded directly from 7digital.com via a user’s Digital Locker.
Spotify is without doubt readying its platform for a full-scale US assault. Users may have been put off by restrictions placed upon the free service but today’s announcement might have people coming back to the service to try out the new buy-to-own service and enjoy their playlists on the go.