Spotify removes time restrictions on free desktop player

The music streaming service previously limited song plays on PCs to encourage subscriptions - is this a bold move or a desperate one?

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The Independent Tech

Spotify has removed time restrictions for users on the desktop version of the program.

Spotify Free users could previously only stream 10 hours of music per month after a 6 month grace period, therefore encouraging users to move over to its paid services.

There was also previously a five-play limit on Spotify Free, where users could only listen to a songs 5 times, although this was removed in the UK in March 2013.

“In the past, we had to restrict your listening time to some hours a month once a 6-month unlimited grace period had passed. But now, if you haven’t noticed, there’s no more time limit if you are using Spotify for free,” the company said in a blog post.

They added: “You can listen to your favourite songs as many times as you like, for as long as you want.”

In December last year Spotify changed their service so anyone could stream music on their mobile or tablet for free, but the feature was not available on the desktop version of the program.

Although the service is good news for Spotify Free customers, Spotify Premium customers may be concerned about the advantages of the subscription service. One user commented on the blog post asking: “What am I paying £10 a month now then?”

However, Spotify Free customers will still have to listen to adverts on the service.

The change may have been a move against competitors such as Google Play, who offer a very similar service to Spotify – their subscription services are both £9.99 a month and grant access to thousands of songs.

The free version of Google Play already allowed users to listen to music on Android and the web, without any adverts.