Spotify alleges Apple blocks its app to promote its own
Popular music app Spotify has alleged that Apple has intentionally blocked an update to its music streaming app with an aim to increase the customers’ flow towards its service. Apple blocked the update after Spotify started asking customers to enjoy the app online rather than on the iOS mobile operating system.
Spotify started encouraging its users to sign up through the website. It was considered that the act aims to avoid the 30% cut on the monthly subscriptions being billed through iOS. Spotify charge iOS subscribers $13 per month, but on other forums, it charges $10.
Things changed when Apple introduced its own music streaming service in June 2015. Apple started providing the service for $10 and that factor made Spotify’s app even more expensive. Since the time Apple has launched its app, it has been able to attract 15 million paying subscribers. In March, Spotify announced that it has 30 mill8ion paying subscribers.
Richard Windsor, an analyst at independent researcher Radio Free Mobile, said that there is hardly anything that Spotify can do, given the fact that Apple has also said that it could remove the app from its completely.
Another option with Spotify is to knock the doors of regulators, but Windsor mentioned that it could not even do that as it requires a lot of fortune and is quite time consuming, nothing of which Spotify could afford.
When Apple introduced its service- Apple Music, Spotify in response started an offer of a three-month subscription service for 99 cents to new customers when they sign through its website. But Apple then threatened to remove the app from the store.
In the next step, Apple started an advertising campaign in which it promoted its app and also stopped customers to pay through the App Store. A letter from Apple to Spotifty mentioned that the former has rejected the new update of Spotify owing to billing issues.
Apple’s legal team said that if Spotify wants to use the app to acquire new customers then it needs to sell its subscriptions using Apple’s billing systems. It is not the first time when Spotify and Apple has been fighting over this issue.
In 2014, Spotify bumped the price of its mobile subscription service to $12.99. There is a possibility that Spotify’s European home base that has stronger laws to protect smaller players may prove of some help in the issue.
Experts were of the view that Spotify is a service whose success is on mobile platforms. Its case is completely different from Amazon Prime or Netflix, whose services started on the web. In the case of Spotify, it needs mobile subscriptions and it needs them to be a lower intermediary cost.
Streaming music does not offer bigger margins in terms of revenue. Lately, Apple has reduced the margin it takes to 15%, and now it is being said that Spotify will be affected by it. On the battle front, Spotify is fighting with Apple for the full rights to its profits.
It has also been found that celebrities have joined Apple and announced the war against Spotify. Taylor Swift teamed up with Apple Music and mentioned about the low cuts being levied by Spotify for artists. Jay-Z and other musicians have been loyal to Tidal, which competes with both Apple Music and Spotify.
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