Spotify is seemingly off to a blazing start in India. The global music streaming service has racked up over 10 lakh unique users across its free and premium tiers in less than a week after launch – Spotify made its India debut on February 27. The numbers are impressive because a) Spotify is entering a price-sensitive market like India which is already dominated by the likes of Gaana et al, and b) an ongoing legal dispute with Warner means Spotify still can’t bring its entire catalogue to the Indian market.
While it isn't as affordable as some of its competitors, Spotify is offering much more flexibility in plans in India as opposed to say the service’s US counterpart. A basic Spotify plan costs Rs 119 a month in India but there’s also an option to get it for Rs 99 a month by opting for a yearly plan – which costs Rs 1,189. Spotify is also offering a student plan with up to 50 per cent off per month (that’s Rs 59 a month for yearly and Rs 66 for 30 days).
You can start with a free trial (for 30 days) and cancel anytime, Spotify says. Alternatively, you can also choose to listen to music for free (ad-based).
“As Spotify grows, our goal is to bring millions of artists and billions of fans together from every country and background. India has an incredibly rich music culture and to best serve this market, we’re launching a custom-built experience. Not only will Spotify bring Indian artists to the world, we’ll also bring the world’s music to fans across India. Spotify’s music family just got a whole lot bigger,” Spotify founder and CEO, Daniel Ek, had said while launching the service in India.
Spotify has been a long time coming in India. The company had announced its plans to expand into the Indian market in March 2018. But the unique nature of India’s music rights market meant it was difficult to pull all the rights together.
A day before launching, Spotify was sued by Warner Music Group which could have delayed the launch further – but a clear-chit from the Bombay High Court allowed Spotify to launch in India, albeit with a caveat. Spotify is required to pay Warner royalties for every piece of music it decides to play from its catalogue which invariably means many of the world’s biggest artists (and their popular songs) aren’t available on Spotify just yet.