The Spotify application on an iPhone.
Fabian Sommer | alliance of images | fake images
Audio streaming service Spotify plans to nearly double its geographic presence and roll out to 85 more countries, adding 36 languages to its platform in the process.
The Swedish firm announced the international expansion on Tuesday at a live streaming event that featured Justin Bieber, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.
Spotify said the expansion, into what is largely seen as developing countries in Asia, Africa, the Pacific and the Caribbean, will allow a billion more people to use its platform.
In the coming days, Spotify will launch in countries like Nigeria, Tanzania, Ghana, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Samoa, Jamaica, Bahamas, and Belize.
“These moves represent Spotify’s broadest market expansion to date,” said Spotify. Following the expansion, Spotify will be available in more than 170 countries.
Spotify launched in 2008 just one year after the first iPhone was launched and has amassed 345 million monthly active users in 95 countries. Of these, 155 million are premium paying subscribers.
While Spotify started out as a music streaming platform, it now allows people to listen to podcasts, audiobooks, and meditations.
The Stockholm-based firm has spent hundreds of millions of dollars to secure exclusive podcast series including a new Barack and Michelle Obama show that will feature Bruce Springsteen.
Competition with tech giants
Spotify faces stiff competition from Apple, Amazon, and Google, who have launched their own music streaming services in recent years.
Arguably the company’s biggest competitor is Apple Music, and Spotify is embroiled in a bitter antitrust dispute with Apple. Spotify doesn’t think it’s fair for it to pay Apple a commission, or what it considers a “tax,” when users subscribe and pay for its service through the Apple App Store. He filed a complaint with the European Commission in March 2019 and is under investigation.
Spotify’s stock price fell 4% to $ 350 on Monday and fell another 0.5% to $ 348 in after-hours trading.