Pros and Cons of Spotify

By Tonatiuh Vazquez,  WP Masters Class of 2015

Spotify is a free music streaming service, it is available just in 58 countries; all of them are nations from America, Europe and Oceania. Spotify offers a huge diversity of musical genres, and to access to this collection it is necessary to have Internet connection and create an account. For those who want to keep their play lists available offline, Spotify also offers a Premium plan  with a cost of $9.99 per month.

The Pros and Cons of Spotify

One of the main features that Spotify provides is that it also works as a social network; you can add friends and share with them your music, or find your favorite artist and see what are they listening, you can also share music through Facebook, Twitter and other social media.

Pros and Cons of Spotify

All of these features make Spotify an interesting music business platform, which make me go more in deep, and find out how it works. Everything started in 2005, when the creators of Spotify, Daniel Ek and Martin Lorentzon realized that it was difficult to get access to music diversity, even with the technology that already existed. Basically they found two ways to get income; due to the advertisements (for free accounts) and from the Premium plan ($9.99 per month).

One of the goals of Spotify was to create a platform that helps to prevent piracy, due to its easy way to get music, but also paying royalties to artists, labels and independent artist (without being registered in any society, such as ASCAP, BMI etc.). Spotify has paid $2 Billion USD in royalties to-date to artist and labels in every country they operate. They retain 30% of the total revenue and they pay 70 % to right holders.

Pros and Cons of SpotifyFor some artists Spotify is not the best business deal, a few of the biggest names in the music industry such as Maria Schneider (jazz), Taylor Swift, The Beatles (pop) among others, removed their music from its database, due to the low royalties that the company paid them, sometimes 1 cent per song played. This problem can turn into a big failure for Spotify that needs to solve or rather get a better agreement with the artists, before it starts loosing their music. In the other hand, for young artists it seems to be a good platform to get exposure around the world, in fact this is part of the Spotify success, it allows music diversity.

Its competitors such as Grooveshark, iTunes and YouTube among others are still missing a thing that Spotify provide to its costumers: “Social network”. Although YouTube has improved in this field, that is not its main concern due to its highest levels of audience too. Other great development that makes Spotify different from its rivals it is the latest desktop version that allows you to sing the songs of your playlist, due to the alliance that they made with “Musixmatch”, which is the biggest catalog of lyrics over the world, evolving as a Karaoke.

However, Spotify needs to overcome the Internet restrictions in some Asian countries and the lack of Internet in some African countries to expand its market. Besides that, they are doing a good work bringing music to millions of listeners; providing them its service not only in average computers, but also in smart phones, smart TVs, and Tablets.

By Tonatiuh Vazquez,  WP Masters Class of 2015



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