With over 159 million active users in 65 countries around the world, Spotify is the biggest music-streaming platform in the world.
Its launch in the country – the Swedish company’s first venture into Africa – means that more and more local artists will be exposed to its vast subscription base and it creates the opportunity for musicians to reach a greater global audience.
Speaking at the launch on Tuesday, Spotify MD for the Middle East and African region, Claudius Boller, revealed that the service offers a feature called Spotify for Artists, which enables musicians to track the performance of their music in real-time – from the number of downloads and streams to the global regions where their music is performing well.
Through this feature, artists will have access to invaluable effective measure data that they can use to develop their marketing and promotional strategies, while using the insights to identify potential new markets and audiences for tour opportunities.
READ MORE: Spotify lands in SA
“It’s a game-changer for artists,” said Boller.
From an ordinary user perspective, subscribers will have access to a catalogue of over 36 million songs and over 2 billion playlists.
The service is available in two packages: one that holds no subscription fee, but users will have to bear with adverts, which Boller said equates to three minutes of ads per hour of streaming. The second option is the premium package which is available for R59,99 per month, with uninterrupted listening and the ability to listen to music offline.
Taking into account the exorbitant price of data in the country, Boller said that Spotify had set SA’s default data streaming setting to 24 kilobits per second (kps), meaning that 10.8MB of data would be depleted for every every hour of music you stream.
This is significantly lower than the global average data depletion rate of around 40MB per hour of music streamed.
For the gamer enthusiasts out there, the service is compatible with Xbox and PlayStation consoles, as well as TVs and smart speakers.
Globally, Spotify is known for its personalised playlists and once the system has recorded enough data to learn user behaviour patterns and music preferences, users will have access to a personalised daily mix, which is a combination of favourite tracks and new songs the system thinks the user will like.
The personalised discovery feature also creates a playlist of new music based on the artists you follow and listen to the most frequently, which is updated every Friday.
Since it’s launch in 2008, the Swedish company has invested over €8 billion (R116 billion) in the global music industry through the purchasing of various licensing fees.
Spotify’s entry into the local market comes late with competitors Deezer, Google Play Music Apple Music, Simfy Africa and most recently Naspers’ Joox having already established themselves in the market.
You can get your 30-day free trial available from the Google Play Store, Apple App Store and Microsoft Store.