Swedish music streaming company Spotify is releasing full-length music videos in a limited beta for premium subscribers, entering an arena that YouTube has dominated for nearly two decades.

The music videos will be available to premium users in the UK, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Sweden, Brazil, Colombia, the Philippines, Indonesia and Kenya in a beta version starting on Wednesday, the company said, as it tries to expand its user base. .

Although it aims to reach 1 billion users by 2030, Spotify’s new plan faces competition from Apple Music and Alphabet’s YouTube, which lets users watch music videos for free.

The Spotify launch will feature “a limited catalog of music videos, including hits from global artists like Ed Sheeran… or local favorites like Aluna,” it said.

In March of last year, Spotify introduced “clips,” vertical videos under 30 seconds that are uploaded directly to Spotify for artists.

The company has also expanded its offerings to include podcasts and audiobooks in an effort to attract more users.

In February, it forecast that premium subscribers would reach 239 million in the current quarter, above estimates of 238.3 million.

In January, Spotify said users in Europe would be able to buy audiobooks and subscription plans from the music streaming app from March as a result of the region’s new Big Tech competition law.

The move will help the company avoid Apple’s 30 percent fee on purchases through its App Store, which has long been a source of contention between app developers and the tech giant.

Spotify has been embroiled in a legal battle for years, claiming it was forced to raise the price of its monthly subscriptions to cover costs related to Apple’s App Store rules.

© Thomson Reuters 2024

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