Spotify, the largest global music streaming subscription service, officially launched in South Africa this week, finally giving us access to this not notch service.
Spotify offers you the choice of a free ad-supported service, or an ad-free Premium subscription service. So you can listen for free forever, or alternatively can upgrade to Spotify Premium for only R59.99 per month*.
The service allows you to browse, discover, curate playlists, build your own music collection and share music with friends, choosing from over 35 million songs by international and local artists, all available to both free users and subscribers.
None of this is particularly new but most people who have used Spotify alongside other music streaming apps will agree that it tops the charts when it comes to functionality. So what can you look forward to?
You have access to great playlists
South African users have instant access to a wide range of local playlists, curated and regularly updated, including Hip Hop Juice, Top Hits South Africa, House Nation, iGqom Le and SA Gold. These are available alongside millions of Spotify and fan-built international playlists.
It has unique music personalisation and discovery features
A major feature of the Spotify service is its personalisation, which allows you to find the music you already love with ease, and will also help you discover new music and artists to love, based on your taste and listening patterns. When you join Spotify, they’ll take you through a ‘Taste Onboarding’ process, which helps Spotify quickly learn more about your music tastes.
Personalised discovery features including Daily Mix (a series of playlists combining your favourite tracks with new songs we think you’ll love), Release Radar (a playlist of new music based on the artists you follow and listen to most, updated every Friday) and Discover Weekly (a playlist based on your unique listening habits – coming soon).
Listen while you play
If you’re into gaming, you’ll be happy to know that Spotify will be available on PlayStation Music, allowing you to stream music on your PlayStation 4 while gaming. You can listen to any song, album or playlist on demand, or even control Spotify through the Quick Menu without interrupting the game.
Spotify also offers:
- Mood and genre playlist hubs: head to Browse to choose from wide range of hubs including Workout, Chill, Party, Focus, Gaming, Sleep, Dinner, Kids and many more.
- Automatic low bitrate streaming in South Africa: Spotify’s default setting for data streaming in South Africa is 24kbps, perfect if you’re streaming when not on wifi**.
- Offline listening for Premium users: simply ‘download’ your music to your mobile device or desktop when you’re online to enjoy while you’re offline.
- High audio quality for Premium users – up to 320 kbps.
- Superior social features:
- Unique sharing integration via Facebook and Twitter
- Share and make collaborative playlists within Facebook Messenger
- Share your own playlists and favourite songs from the app and become an influencer in your own right
- Charts: Global streaming charts. South Africa charts coming soon.
- Play everywhere: download the Spotify app on mobile, laptop and tablet
- Listen everywhere: Wi-Fi and Bluetooth speakers, Amazon Echo, Sonos, Bose, TV, Google Chromecast, Sony PlayStation®4 and PlayStation®3 consoles, Microsoft Xbox, Samsung, Google Home, Waze, Carplay and many others.
- Background play: the music never stops on your mobile, even when you run the app in the background.
Keen to try it? You can download the app via the Android or iOS app store or by heading to spotify.com.
*Ways to pay:
Credit cards: Visa, Mastercard, Amex
Debit cards: Visa & Mastercard
Enjoy a 30-day free trial when signing up for Spotify Premium with a credit or debit card.
**Spotify’s default data streaming setting for South Africa is 24kbps
To give you a comparison, Spotify uses 10.8 megabytes per hour of data while streaming music, compared with 43.2MB per hour as the lowest reported data consumption rate available to other music streaming services, according to Android Central.
And for when you are on wifi and want to stream at high quality rates, Spotify also offers data streaming at 96kbps, 160kbps and 320kbps (for Premium users)