Spotify’s half-priced student pricing expands worldwide

Hot on the heels of Pandora’s public launch of its on-demand streaming service, Pandora Premium, rival Spotify is looking to make its service more appealing to younger users by rolling out discounted student pricing to more countries around the world. The company announced today that its roughly half-priced version of its Premium service is now available to students who qualify in 33 new countries, in addition to the U.S., U.K., and Germany where student pricing is already offered.

The new countries where student pricing is now available includes: Austria, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Columbia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Ecuador, Estonia, Finland, France, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Lithuania, Latvia, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Philippines, Portugal, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland, and Turkey.

In the war for subscribers, offering a lower price point can encourage sign-ups – and this is especially true among the younger demographic, a target market for these new streaming services and the users most likely to struggle to afford access.

On Spotify Premium’s student plan, users have the same benefits as a regular paid subscriber, including ad-free listening, access to Spotify’s catalog of over 30 million songs, offline listening, and more.

Students will have to verify their active enrollment in a university in order to take advantage of the lower price. Spotify is working with authentication and verification software provider SheerID to assist with this aspect of its student program. (Apple Music, by comparison, does something similar – but works with third-party UNiDAYS for verification.)

Like Apple Music’s discount, which drops the $9.99/month service down to $4.99/month, Spotify’s student discount is also a half-priced offering. In the U.S., it costs the same as Apple Music, and that same discount rate will apply in the new countries, as well.

With the additional markets, Spotify’s student discount is available in a total of 36 countries worldwide, which the company notes makes it the biggest music streaming student offer in the world by geographical reach. Apple Music, however, isn’t that far behind – its student offer expanded to more countries in November, including major markets like Canada, Japan, France and China, which brought its total supported markets to 32 at the time.

The two companies are fierce competitors, with Spotify having recently hit 50 million paying customers, and Apple Music having grown to 20 million subscribers as of December. And with Pandora Premium entering the market, the competition looks to be heating up even further.