The music streaming service Spotify is expanding its service to Jamaican and 84 other new markets. It will also launch 36 new languages on the platform. The combined population impacted by the expansion totals over 1 billion people. Spotify said that now “sounds and stories that once remained local” will be available to an international audience of fans. The move represents the company’s commitment to creating a “truly borderless audio ecosystem” that links creators, listeners, and content.
Spotify plans to work closely with local creators and other partners in each market to provide a customized experience that meets the unique needs of each location through scale language translations and specialized formats for payment. Its expansion is like to promote the discovery of more music genres that have gained the attention of the global music audience.
Initially, Spotify’s free and premium plans will be available in all markets, and some market will also be offered individual, family, duo, and student plan options. Each new market will have access to the platform’s full global catalog, and Spotify plans to work with local rights holders to expand the catalog to include additional local offerings. Most markets will have full podcast catalogs available, and in other markets, the firm plans to work with local partners to introduce more podcasts from its catalog and from Anchor, its proprietary creator platform.
Other offerings included with the Spotify expansion include a personalized experience for users via its home screen, browse, and search features. The streaming service will also be available on mobile and desktop web players. In the future, it plans to make the service available on television, speakers, wearables, and automobiles.
With more listeners on Spotify, the service creates more opportunities for artists and podcasters to make a living from their efforts, and more creators make for more audio content for Spotify users. According to Spotify’s chief freemium business offers Alex Norström, the relationship between creators and listeners will “propel the audio industry forward.”
When Apple Music expanded into Jamaica in 2020, industry stakeholders believed it would benefit the music industry in Jamaica, with experts noting that Jamaican had been negatively impacted by the absence of the Apple streaming service and platforms like Spotify in the Caribbean and in Africa where Jamaican music is extremely popular. According to Julian Jones-Griffith, artist manager and CEO of the music publishing agency Pop Style Music, the first thing record labels check is how much an artist is streaming, and when the streaming services are not available in core markets, the numbers are distorted in regard to an artist’s true popularity. The expansion of Apple Music helped to bring in more revenue and level the playing field for Jamaica’s local music industry.
In addition to Jamaica, the markets slated for Spotify expansion in the Caribbean and Latin America include Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Curaçao, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, Trinidad, and Tobago.
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