Spotify preparing for free mobile service in Taiwan


Taiwan — TAIPEI — Online music streaming service Spotify is planning to expand the free tier of its service to mobile device owners in Taiwan in an attempt to broaden its potential base of listeners.

Sunita Kaur, Spotify’s managing director for Asia, revealed in an interview with CNA that the Swedish start-up company will soon give Taiwanese users access to millions of songs across their smartphones or tablets for free.

The new offering will enable local customers to listen to all the Spotify playlists they have created on their PCs and also discover the perfect music for a specific moment in time, Kaur said.

She declined to elaborate on a timetable for the launch because the company is still negotiating music licensing deals with labels and artists in Taiwan, a market in which Spotify only set up operations in September 2013.

��We’ve been here a year, and the reception has been amazing. We’re looking forward to building an even better Spotify experience for Taiwan’s music lovers,�� Kaur said.

Taiwanese users will also be able to enjoy Spotify Connect �X a home audio service that lets users play millions of tracks through their speakers or smart TVs by using the Spotify mobile app as a remote �X as soon as Spotify’s manufacturing partners decide to launch their certified products in Taiwan, she said.

At present, users in Taiwan can only listen to Spotify’s desktop or laptop program for free with ads, and only premium members who pay NT$149 (US$4.84) a month have access to the service through other devices.

According to Spotify statistics, 72 percent of Taiwanese users connected to Spotify’s services over the past year through desktop PCs or laptops, reflecting the company’s low penetration rate of mobile users in Taiwan so far.

Taiwan is one of the few markets in which Spotify has not launched its free mobile service. Founded in 2008, the music streaming portal is available in 59 markets globally, with more than 50 million active users and over 12.5 million paying subscribers.