Do you like free tunes? Sure you do. Most major streaming services, however, refuse to give up their mobile music for a song, instead opting to restrict phone-based listening to premium subscribers, with Slacker and Pandora being the two major exceptions. Today, a new competitor is entering the ad-supported mobile arena: Spotify. Later this week, an update to Spotify's iOS app will bring you all the free, unlimited, ad-supported tunes your ears could ever want.
There are, of course, some caveats. Unlike on the desktop version, freeloaders will only be able to use Spotify's radio function, which are created based off of artists, albums and playlists of your choosing. There will be ads permeating the experience and you'll be limited as to how many songs you'll be able to skip. All that being said, here's what ad-supported listeners can do, straight from the press release:
Create limitless streaming radio stations from single songs, playlists, albums or artists
Create an unlimited number of stations and listen as long as they like
Save tracks to Spotify playlists - any song that users "like" will be saved, so they can find the songs later
Personalize stations in real time by "liking" tracks to hear similar music
Browse friends' playlists and create radio stations based on their tastes
Hear great new songs from Spotify's state-of-the-art recommendation engine, based on what millions of real people are listening to
Access a catalog of over 16 million tracks
Premium subscribers will receive unlimited skips and no ads, while subscribers to the upper-tier $10/mo. plan will presumably be able to continue listening to songs on-demand as they see fit.
We can hear you already: "What, no Android love?" Unfortunately, not yet, although a spokesman told Engadget that "We're looking to bring it to all of the major platforms in due time" when prompted with that very question.