Swedish audio streaming and media services provider, Spotify, announced on Monday a new high-end subscription plan for its users, which will bring lossless, CD-quality audio to the platform, called Spotify HiFi. Compared to its competition, such as Tidal and Amazon Music, Spotify is a little late to the party.
However, the leading subscription music service announced a new lossless streaming tier that will allow listeners to get the most from their digital music library. Spotify “Stream On” virtual event broadcasted the news.
According to a report by the Verge, Spotify HiFi will be available later this year and “will deliver music in CD-quality, lossless audio format to your device and Spotify Connect-enabled speakers, which means fans will be able to experience more depth and clarity while enjoying their favourite tracks.”
In the past, Spotify has done small tests of higher-quality streaming. Still, it’s now going to launch the feature more widely — with the limitation that it’ll be available only “in select markets” with pricing yet to be announced. As it stands today, Spotify tops out at 320kbps audio.
According to Geekdroids, “Lossless music refers to uncompressed music. Most modern music streaming platforms use compressed music formats to deliver music as the format from the recording is often large. Lossless music is just the unmodified music from the recording studio.”
In 2019, Amazon rolled out Amazon Music HD priced at $14.99 per month (or $12.99 for Prime customers), a premium over the standard Amazon Music Unlimited service. Tidal is priced slightly higher at $19.99 monthly for the “Hi-Fi” plan called “Tidal Masters” that can even exceed high-resolution 96 kHz / 24-bit audio.
Interestingly, both Tidal and Amazon do not offer lossless audio quality in India. This provides Spotify with the opportunity to become the first platform to do so, giving it a major lead over others.
Biggest expansion till now
Along with the Spotify HiFi plan, the Swedish company also announced its biggest expansion plan to date. Spotify will be introducing its services in 85 more markets in the “next few days”. It currently has more than 345 million monthly active users, and over 155 million paid subscribers globally.
According to a report by MSN, the new countries include: Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belize, Benin, Bhutan, Botswana, Brunei Darussalam, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cabo Verde, Cambodia, Cameroon, Chad, Comoros, Côte d’Ivoire, Curaçao, Djibouti, Dominica, Equatorial Guinea, Eswatini, Fiji, Gabon, Gambia, Georgia, Ghana, Grenada, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Kenya, Kiribati, Kyrgyzstan, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Lesotho, Liberia, Macau, Madagascar, Malawi, Maldives, Mali, Marshall Islands, Mauritania, Mauritius, Micronesia, Mongolia, Mozambique, Namibia, Nauru, Nepal, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Rwanda, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Solomon Islands, Sri Lanka, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, Tanzania, Timor-Leste, Togo, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Tuvalu, Uganda, Uzbekistan, Vanuatu, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.