Spotify’s ad-supported tier has long been one of the service’s differentiators. Naturally, the model’s not nearly as feature-rich as its paid counterpart, though the company’s removing one of those key distinctions as of this morning.
In a press release, the company notes that free users will soon be able to stream music through Spotify Connect-sporting speakers. The newfound integration will work with hardware companies that switch to the new SDK.
Here’s your standard game-changer quote, this time from Senior Product Director Michael Ericsson: “The release of our new eSDK will change the game for Spotify’s Free users who want to enjoy music on their connected speakers. We look forward to supporting our partners over the coming months as they update existing speakers and bring new products to market.”
Most (around 104 million) of Spotify’s 191 million subscribers are free users. The tier has been a tremendous part of the service’s global growth, and it continues to be a difference as Apple Music gains a foothold, particularly here in the U.S.
Earlier this year, Spotify fleshed out its free offering, but Premium continues to offer some marked advantages. Along with getting rid of ads, it includes higher-quality streams and the ability to download offline tracks.