Rumours are circulating that Apple is about to announce that the Spotify app for the iPhone is approved and will be available for download within days. If true, this will fundamentally change the way that we listen to and pay for music.
Spotify has already had a huge impact on music listening. It is now poised to revolutionise the financial model with its ‘fremium’ offer of an ad-funded free service and a premium subscription offer (which will be required if you want to listen on the iPhone). In its native Sweden it appears it has already overtaken Apple’s iTunes store. The head of Universal Music in Sweden, Per Sundin has said that “in 5 months from the launch Spotify became our largest digital source of income and so passed by iTunes.”
Spotify mobile is a key development because it reaches an important demographic group that listens to music mainly on the move. The eighteen plus generation who live at home or in shared accommodation want their music on a portable player – be it an iPhone, dedicated MP3 player or another smart device. With an Android version of Spotify waiting in the wings rejecting the iPhone app could harm iPhone sales.
There is no official word yet and almost a month has passed since the app was submitted, but if the rumours are premature then could this be another salvo in Spotify’s sophisticated social media PR campaign? By posting videos on Youtube showing the interface, blogging about the mobile versions for iPhone and Android, the Spotify supremos Daniel Ek and Martin Lorentzon have ensured the buzz is constant.