Listening to music has been a daily staple in my life since I was a kid. All the way back I would save up my lawnmowing money for the waterproof, sport Sony walkman cassette player. I used that thing almost every day I can’t count how many batteries I went though. Then CDs hit and I moved to the Sony Walkman shock resistant CD player. I had the good speakers and home stereo and the 200 CD carousel disc shuffler that I played every day. In college, I would be at the music store a few times a week getting mix CDs, rare finds, over seas bands. Then the Internet came along and the Napster-era digital music era. I went from hundreds of CDs, spending hundreds of hours getting them into mp3 and putting them on my many mp3 players. Instead of one album or collection of 16 songs I carried hundreds to thousands of songs to my entire collection with me at all times.
The world of global music blew open for access to the masses. Soon after online services started to pop up that allowed 24 hours a day music from artists and genres you may never have found otherwise. Not only can I get the music I already had but get access to things I never would have had or found in record stores.
In the early days, Pandora was king. I was a Pandora user for years but switched to Spotify as my sole service. I wrote about that move 7 years ago! The short summary on why I am a die-hard Spotify fan is their playlists and their ‘intelligent’ custom music playlist creators where they create new lists with new artists based on my overall listening habits.
Each and every day I have Spotify on and I have over 100 playlists in my collection, most are mass collections of different artists. The family plan I have has me paying $15/mo. and my wife, son is on the shared account. Now, I see that Spotify is looking to raise the rates and of course, people are starting to whine and cry about it.
This is something I always have a hard time understanding people’s thought process. Most do not look at the whole context and VALUE of what they are paying. Spotify at $15/mo. for 3 people is a steal.
For the amount of new music, the number of songs, the amount of variety I cover in a month’s worth of listening would cost me hundreds of dollars through buying the CDs/Vinyl. The value of what you pay for Spotify to what you get out of it is off-balanced. Music services is different than video, movie or TV services because you are going to have them on far more often than video. In the car, in the kitchen, while you work, while you work out, while you mow the lawn, running all the time in the background to help you relax or sleep.
Music soothes the savage beast and Spotify has more to offer than you will ever touch.
There is a flip side to the price increase. If they raise it a few dollars, who cares, the service is still underpriced for the value it provides in my opinion. If they raise it or offer a Super Premium tier where I get exclusive content, music videos, and a true premium-level service I would pay $30/mo. The reason is it all comes down to the overall value to price.
A service that I will use every single day is valuable to me. If Spotify wants to raise prices, that’s fine. If they want to introduce a new higher-priced tier and it appeals to me and I will use the full experience, I will get it.
Anyone that uses a subscription service and does not know that over time the prices will go up hasn’t been around enough. Look at cable prices 20 years ago to today.
Spotify is the top of the heap when it comes to online streaming and they need to keep supporting their model to make their services better. The other aspect of this service are the payments to the artists. If Spotify came out and said we are not changing the service in any way but we are increasing prices to increase the payments directly to the artists I’d applaud them and pay that. Because when the artists are paid competitively from one service over another, then that will attract more artists to join and that will make that service better anyway.
Side thought – Artists always complain about the payments from Spotify as too low and only focus on a single platform. They also get payments from all the others as well so collectively they are getting paid 3, 4, 6, 7 times over for each service their music is streamed from. They generally leave that part out to inflate the argument against one service’s model.
Either way, people need to calm down, take a step back and look at the overall value you are getting from Spotify. If you feel that the price does not match your use, then cancel. If you understand that you are getting access to more music than you can possibly imagine or consume in a lifetime for the price of a traditional single CD a month… well, I won’t change your mind.
End of line.
Binary Blogger has spent 20 years in the Information Security space currently providing security solutions and evangelism to clients. From early web application programming, system administration, senior management to enterprise consulting I provide practical security analysis and solutions to help companies and individuals figure out HOW to be secure every day.