The music scene in Singapore looks set to grow by volumes with today’s announcement that music streaming service Spotify is now available here. Music fans in the country now has on-demand, legal access to over 20 million music tracks – and for free.
If you’re not aware, Spotify started as a tiny little startup in Stockholm, Sweden in 2008. Today, the music streaming service has grown to a large user base encompassing the United States and many countries in Europe. According to Sriram Krishnan, Spotify’s head of new markets in Asia Pacific, the service – available now in 23 countries – currently has over 6 million full-paying customers who subscribe to their premium music services out of a total subscribed base of 24 million active users. Its CEO Daniel Ek is considered one of the biggest entrepreneurs under the age of 30, and the company’s success have spawned a plethora other music services eager to get a share of the music pie.
Spotify‘s model in Singapore works slightly differently from those in other countries – the Spotify Free tier allows instant music for free on the computer (ad-supported), while Spotify Premium at S$9.90/month allows music to be downloaded on any device including mobile handsets and/or tablet devices at enhanced audio quality. Spotify also launches in Malaysia today; its Premium tier cost just RM14.90. Users can easily search, stream and even share music on Spotify, Facebook, Twitter, a blog or by email.
“Spotify offers everything you could possibly want from a music service; it’s free, it’s fast, it’s simple and it sounds fantastic – try it once and you’ll love it,” says Krishnan. “The introduction of Spotify into Sweden years back saw growth in the country’s music industry, along with a corresponding decrease in music piracy. We’re hopeful that at such attractive pricing that music lovers will move from music piracy to an easy way to legally get music.” Since its oringal launch, Spotify has driven more than half a billion US dollars to music rights holders, and aims to drive another half a billion US dollars to rights holders during 2013. Spotify is already the second biggest source of digital music revenue for labels in Europe.
Other players in the music distribution business in this region are likely to view this development with some consternation, but that’s the nature of the (music) business.