Music Tech

Spotify Drops All Paid Downloads

image from Spotify has eliminated the ability to buy downloads on it's UK and European sites. U.S. users never had the option. When users try to buy, a message appears: "We're no longer supporting new download purchases on Spotify". The shift is certain to upset those artists and labels already concerned by income streams from Spotify.

VOTE HERE: Should Spotify & Other Streaming Music Services Also Sell Downloads?

"We’re currently not offering new download purchases on Spotify. You can still use downloads you’ve already purchased," reads the Spotify UK FAQ. Previously purchased tracks will continue to be available within Spotify playlists. The changes were noticed late yesterday by Pocket Lint and overnight Spotify released this statement:

“We recently updated Spotify to further simplify the service and pave the way for new features announced at the end of last year. In-app purchases aren’t part of this update but we’re not ruling out their return. Credits/gift cards already purchased are still redeemable.”

More from the Spotify FAQ:

“I still have downloads that haven’t been used”

That’s OK. You can still use them to download tracks. If a track is available for download, you’ll see the Get Track option when you right-click the track. Right-click track to buy

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“Can I still re-download a track I have bought ?”

Yes. Just visit your Downloads page to see how many “re-downloads” you have left for each track.

I have a Spotify gift card that can be used for downloads”

You’ll still be able to use that too. Even though it’s not possible to buy downloads using Spotify Desktop, you’ll still be able to use your Spotify gift card, as long as it’s one of the cards that features “Downloads” as an option. Go to the web address printed on the card to use it.

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  1. Unlikely to return. Why offer something which is in direct commercial opposition to your model ? And probably has something to do with the fact that they’re not making a profit, yet. A lot if folk use the free service as a discovery engine, then buy downloads. Spotify make a lot less out of that than premium, so they’re hoping this will push people into going premium.

  2. I thought the same about shifting those who download onto a premium account.
    I didn’t see the point of having downloads on Spotify to begin with and the revenue seen from spotify downloads is minimal compared to streaming. something like 0.6%

  3. the download capability seemed like a feature overlap with their premium services (i.e. offline availability). i can see why they made this business decisions. fans may not like it at first, but they’ll adjust.

  4. I agree. I finally made the switch to premium and it’s been worth it so far. I especially like using some of the Spotify-Powered iOS apps. Check out Fliptape if you get a chance. It’s an alternative to the Spotify player and you can listen to what you’re friends are playing.

  5. They can concentrate on developing and adding to their regular revenue streams, namely subscription and advertising. Downloads simply muddle the business model. Why download when you can get what you want from the cloud?

  6. What utter rubbish. The “artists” as you put it receive but a small percentage of what the rights’ owners get – there is a difference. Those who actually create or compose music, in my opinion, only get a small piece of the cake. If rights’ organisations only admitted that fact, that they were looking out for the publishers, the record labels, et cetera I might have a little more respect for them – if only for their honesty. Instead we hear this “revenue source for the artists” humbug.

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