Is Spotify Shooting Itself in the Foot With the “Jump In” Feature for Free Users?

Amidst Contract Negotations, Spotify Tests Jump In Feature
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Amidst Contract Negotations, Spotify Tests Jump In Feature
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Image by Paco Lopez (CC by 2.0)

Will users “jump in” to playlists on Spotify? Or will they, along with major labels, jump ship?

A few weeks ago, I received a rather interesting e-mail. Spotify wanted me to upgrade my free account to Premium. The price? About a few bucks for just three months. I got the e-mail last week. Then, I got the same e-mail just a few days ago. The company really wants my business.

Now, Spotify wants to try something brand new. According to The Verge, the company is currently testing a new feature. Dubbed “Jump In,” free users will receive on-demand songs, but only in certain playlists. Spotify will possibly do away with shuffle-only playlists for free users, allowing them to select the songs they want. This gives users a sample of what a Premium subscription has to offer.

News of this feature comes at a very bad time for Spotify. Ahead of their planned IPO, the Swedish streaming service is out of contract with the big 3 major labels. The company is currently in negotiations with record labels. However, sources close to the negotiation deals say the labels want the company to scale back free tier.

Since the company is out of contract, the streamer would need special approval to push Jump In. It’s unlikely record labels will approve the feature unless the company includes special free-tier sponsored ads. However, the Swedish streamer wants to roll out the feature in just a few weeks.

If successful, paying $10 would seem like a less viable option for free users, harming the company’s revenue. Spotify hopes the feature will convert free users to paid subscribers. However, rolling out the feature would also alert or seriously delay con negotiations with labels.

Whether Spotify will roll out the feature, or scrap it altogether is unknown. The Swedish company is facing stiff competition from other music streamers. Apple Music recently reported 20 million paid subscribers. The Swedish streamer counts with double that amount. However, Apple achieved the feat in just under 18 months. Spotify achieved 40 million paid users after 8 years.

One Response

  1. Avid Reader Haha

    Not if the songs are limited to those recorded by Spotify…