As a tech enthusiast and as someone who’s been using Spotify as my main source of music streaming for years– I still harbor mixed feelings about the popular music app.

Spotify Free vs Premium – 2017

Spotify Free

  • The #1 most annoying thing is that you can’t select a specific song on mobile.
  • Plus, you only get 6 skips per 30 minute session on mobile. You can however switch around playlists, songs, or radio stations to try and get a better song.
  • I used to have a workaround for certain songs, like hit singles where I could go directly to the single album and it would play that song first. This was great for a while because this pseudo hack was frequently vulnerable for new popular songs– But the bastards caught on and fixed the bug several months ago.
  • Even when a Spotify partner ‘gifts you 30 minutes of free music’ the system often glitches and serves you a new ad before the time is up. Sometimes this could be caused by closing and reopening the app, for example.
  • Ads often repeat themselves back to back sometimes. Yawn.
  • Spotify Premium native ads are NOT varied enough. Hello? It’s called content creation. Serve me more varied and interesting ads. Better yet, do more research, segment your customers, and test targeted ads. Maybe they’re already doing this somewhere– but I have found Spotify ads to be dry for over a year now.
  • To be fair, you can still use the playlist creation and edit functions on mobile, and your playlists aren’t lost when downgrading from Premium to Spotify Free.

FINAL IMPRESSION: Cumbersome, but it gets the job done.

Spotify Premium

  • Premium will still occasionally serve you ads from sponsors. Upgrading only hides native ads.
  • There was a period of time where Spotify Premium would freeze up often and all I could do was close the app and reopen it to fix the problem. I haven’t seen this problem in a while, granted I’ve been using Spotify Free for a year now.
  • This issue actually exists on Spotify Free as well: Mobile users can’t remove a song from a playlist from mobile– it can only be done on desktop. I’m just disappointed that this still hasn’t been addressed.

FINAL IMPRESSION: Great music access, but the experience is ultimately imperfect.

This was not a sponsored post by the way.

I pay these nerds out of pocket so I’ll say whatever I want, however I want.

All in all, Spotify Premium is a really good deal and I’m not at all criticizing spotify on the price.

Spotify Premium vs Free: Why upgrade?

It’s only about $9.99 + tax charged monthly for Premium access, with unlimited skips, repeats, rewinds, and all that jazz.

It has an awesome interface and it’s music library is 20 times larger than Pandora’s. you can close the app or lock your screen and the music keeps playing, which you can’t do with Youtube.

My main criticism of Spotify is the aggressive indifference they have towards the free user…

I understand the idea of incentivizing users to upgrade– really I do.

But I can’t help but feel like the level of friction they’ve created on the free platform is just a bit much.

As a previous customer, I cancelled under special and temporary circumstances.

Since then, I’ve been using the free version for my workouts, drives, and general chillaxin’.

I could have upgraded again over 6 months ago…

But I guess I’ve been bitter.

I’m not saying it makes sense… it’s just how I feel.

Maybe I’m biased, because I had the Premium version and went back to Free, so I know what I’m missing.

But as someone who used to be a huge fan of the music app, I can’t help but feel like they could do a better job of nurturing customer loyalty.

And for the record, I still have no plans to upgrade anytime soon.


Spotify Free vs Premium | Digital Influencer | Creation Despite

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