Wednesday, 22 May, 2019

Amazon reportedly exploring free, ad-supported music streaming service, Spotify shares slip

Spotify stock exchange Amazon tipped to launch a free, ad-supported music service to take on Spotify
Adrian Cunningham | 18 April, 2019, 20:12

Furthermore, the free service's availability would initially be limited to Echo Speakers and its launch could be as early as next week.

Shares in Swedish streaming giant, Spotify, dived 4% yesterday, following reports Amazon is in talks to launch an ad-supported free music streaming service.

Spotify has 116 million free and 96 million and paying subscribers. Music Catalog Amazon has offered record labels a pay-per-stream revenue model regardless of how much advertising the company sells, according to Billboard.

Amazon is yet to respond on the matter. Reports indicate Amazon has over 20 million subscribers across its services, with at least a good chunk of them signed on to the company's music streaming service, Amazon Music Unlimited.

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The world's biggest e-retailer would market the free music service through its voice-activated Echo speakers. Yet as we reported earlier this month, Apple Music's paid subscribers have now surpassed Spotify's in the U.S., which may have inspired to take a run at Spotify, as well.

It is uncertain whether Amazon will fall suit with Spotify's free version in being more of a radio-style system, or whether users will have more freedom in how they jam out. Apple Music serves 56 million paying and a similar number of free users. Spotify now has the biggest subscriber count globally, but Apple Music recently announced it has accrued the most number of subscribers in the United States.

Whereas, a full-featured music offering, Amazon Music Unlimited, is available for $9.99 monthly, or $7.99 monthly for Prime members. Apple Music, by contrast, doesn't offer a free tier. If it turns out to be too limited, listeners would have a significant reason to stick with Spotify and still save some bucks without a subscription.