Breaking Now: Streaming music service Spotify – born in Sweden but currently taking the UK and the rest of Europe by storm – has released a video of the iPhone app which they’ve just submitted to Apple, which means it could be out in a few weeks. They’ve also revealed more of their business model – mobile access on any device will require a premium subscription.
Interestingly, you’ll be able to use the app when there is no wireless connection. The application has an offline mode that allows users to temporarily cache playlists to their phone for use when there is no connection. The video shows how this works.
Keen observers will note that since Spotify allows access to millions of music tracks, why would Apple allow this app to go into the store and potentially compete with iTunes? Apple has allowed the Last.FM app into the store but this is more like a radio station – Spotify behaves like a jukebox, bringing up exactly the song and artist you want with one click.
However, it’s common tech industry knowledge that Apple makes fairly meagre profits from iTunes, as it’s largely a honeypot to get consumers to buy Apple hardware, sales from which form the bulk of their profits. So Spotify would not compete nearly as much as you might think – plus, making it a subscriber-only application on the iPhone further creates a barrier to competition with the iTunes store.
Spotify recently signed a deal to bring two million more tracks from indie labels to the services in preparation for a US launch expected later this year.