[UPDATED] Hi - Fi, Hi-Rez or Lossless. Whatever you want to call it, higher quality music streaming offers a new revenue opportunity for both streamers and rightholders. A new public test signals that Spotify is about to join Tidal in offering a premium hi-fi music tier.
Spotify is openly testing a lossless streaming option. Currently called Spotify Hi-FI, the offering became available to select Premium subscribers yesterday as part of a what appears to be an A/B test to determine the best price point.
Spotify began the test with select users yesterday, offering "hi-fi quality lossless" streaming at $5, $7.50 and $10 above the $10 per month price for Spotify Premium. But several Reddit users who attempted to sign up for the lossless music service got either an error message or one saying that it was not available in their area.
Signs that Spotify was prepping a Hi-Fi launch first surfaced two weeks ago when an email survey asked some users if they would pay $5 above the $10 premium service for lossless audio. When The Verge reached Spotify for comment yesterday, a spokesperson said only, “We are always testing new products and offers but have no news to share at this time."
Without providing any exact numbers, Tidal has said that a large number of its estimated 3 million subscribers pay an extra $10 for its lossless audio teir.
UPDATE: Deezer also offers Deezer Elite hi fi streaming, available exclusively to Sonos customers registered to Deezer.