While Spotify would love to have more paying, premium subscribers, they also have to accept the fact that a majority of their users are actually using the free version. It may have limited features and you have to endure the ads, but at least you’re not paying for anything. The music streaming giant seems to be adding more features for this segment as they have now released a new SDK that would let free users access Spotify Connect through connected speakers.
Previously, only Premium users are able to stream their music through Spotify Connect on speakers that support the feature. But now a new update to the Commercial Partners’ SDK will enable the feature for free users as well. It’s now up to the hardware partners to update their software so that both premium and free users will be able to stream their music and podcasts through Connect.
Spotify Connect is an alternative to Bluetooth and AirPlay if you want to listen to your favorite artists, albums, playlists, and podcasts on your speakers. All you have to do is make sure your speaker and your source device is on the same WiFi network. Play a song and then select from the Devices Available and start listening. Currently, Spotify Connect is compatible with Sonos speakers, Amazon Alexa-enabled devices, Google Home, Denon, Bose, and Chromecast Audio.
Spotify senior product director Mikael Ericsson says that this new SDK “will change the game for Spotify’s Free users” or at least for those who’ve always wanted to enjoy their music on connected speakers directly. This is one of their steps to ensure that the 104 million free users will continue to stick to Spotify despite there being a lot of options out there.
Of course, there is still a world of difference between free and premium users, as the latter will be the ones to keep the company afloat. Spotify is still hoping that those who are using it for free will eventually convert to paying once they see all the benefits of having a premium account. But for now, this should make free users a bit happier.