No no, no no no no, no no THERE’S NO LIMITS now to Spotify’s ad-supported free tier, after the company confirmed that it is removing its listening caps in all countries where the streaming service is available. It’s the last stage in a gradual dismantling of the restrictions that Spotify reluctantly put in place in April 2011, limiting free users to 10 hours of monthly listening time after their first six months, as well as only being able to play individual tracks five times ever (Bulletin, 14-Apr-11). The track caps have been removed on a country-by-country basis over time, and never put in place in most new countries that Spotify has launched in since then. The removal of the 10-hour restrictions in the countries where it remains comes alongside Spotify’s new free mobile service, which launched globally this month. In truth, the news isn’t a surprise, but it is further confirmation of the renewed backing from rightsholders for ad-supported streams, rather than seeing them only as a step on the road to premium subscriptions.

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