Swedish music streaming giant Spotify announced that it is expanding its ‘Music+Talk’ feature to countries, including India, introducing a new series of shows that combine music and talks.
According to a report by the BusinessLine, the feature enables creators to add full-length music tracks from Spotify’s catalog alongside their talk segments.
“This is the first time that creators will be able to work on a new listening experience that brings together music and spoken-word content in an easy and elegant package — exclusively via Anchor and Spotify,” the company said in a statement.
In addition to India, the new feature will also be available in countries including Japan, the Philippines, Indonesia, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, the Netherlands, Sweden, Mexico, Brazil, Chile, Argentina, and Colombia.
Creators in these markets will now have access to the “Music” tool in Anchor, where they can incorporate full songs from Spotify’s library of 70 Mn tracks into their spoken-word audio creations. As for listeners, they can interact directly with the music within an episode by liking, saving, and sharing with each track as they would in any playlist, Spotify said in a blog post.
Now, while Spotify premium users will have access to the full version of the tracks, free users will only be able to hear 30-second previews of each song. Shows can be listened to globally wherever Spotify is available.
Prior to this in March, Spotify had announced that India is one of the eight new markets this year where it will expand its ”Sound Up” initiative to represent underrepresented podcasters and is also adding 12 languages as the music streaming platform looks to further expand its position in the country”s burgeoning digital content consumption market.
In February, this year, Spotify reported a 27% YoY growth in its monthly active user (MAU) base to 345 Mn in Q4 2020 (the October-December period in the last calendar year). The growth exceeded the company’s projections of 340 Mn to 345 Mn MAUs for the quarter. It added that podcast usage was a significant factor in the net additions in the quarter.
Spotify added 25 Mn MAUs in the quarter and benefited from faster growth in India, US, and Western Europe, with “India serving as a notable source of upside vs. our forecast driven by successful marketing campaigns,” the company stated. In fact, Spotify has also doubled down on small ticket subscriptions tailored for the India market in order to grow its user base.
In February, on completing two years in the Indian market, Spotify said that 90% of podcast listeners from India are under the age of 35. It added that the number of podcasts created on Anchor in India have increased 80x in a span of one year from February 2020 to February 2021.