Spotify to launch music streaming service in India to stay ahead of Apple

Spotify to launch music streaming service in India to stay ahead of Apple

The world’s largest music streaming service, Spotify, is looking to bring its service to India, one of the fastest-growing internet markets in the world, as it looks to boost growth and stay ahead of rival Apple.Announcing Spotify’s plans to list on public markets on April 3, CEO Daniel Ek said the Stockholm-based company was planning an entry into some of the largest markets in the world. Spotify is taking a rather unusual path to go public and will directly sell shares to the public.”We are working on launching in some of the biggest markets in the world, including India, Russia, and Africa, which have a very rich musical culture,” Ek said during his presentation. He said that post IPO, the company would continue to focus on growth rather than turning on the profit machine.While no further details were divulged on when Spotify could launch its service here or its pricing in the country, the company did disclose in its IPO filing last week that it has leased office space in Mumbai. The company has also made ex-Googler Akshat Harbola as its Head of Market Operations in India.Plans to enter India and other fast-growing markets comes as industry analysts say Apple’s rate of signing up new paid subscribers is far outstripping that of Spotify’s. In the US, the largest music streaming market in the world, Apple Music could beat Spotify in the next few quarters to become the leading player there.Despite its service not being available in India, there already are several thousand users in the country who use Spotify via VPNs. Spotify said that the awareness of its brand among users in India is already high, alluding to the fact that the company would be able to achieve organic growth in India.However, India’s market for music streaming is witnessing a marked shift now.

While Times Group-owned Gaana, which recently received $115 million in funding led by Tencent, currently leads the India market in terms of a sheer number of users, competition in the space is becoming cutthroat.In India, Apple charges the lowest subscription fee for its Apple Music service anywhere in the world. While a person in the US pays $9.99 every month to access Apple Music, in India the monthly charge is just Rs 120 or under $2. However, the company has failed to make a big dent in India largely due to its lack of regional content.Amazon, the latest entrant into India’s music streaming space is offering customers access to its Prime Music as part of its Rs 999 yearly Prime loyalty programme. The company has already scored millions of users via its video streaming service and free expedited delivery service, but has also tied up with several large regional music producers to bring their content on its platform.Spotify will need to drop its prices from $9.99 per month to something more affordable in India if it wants to grow its base of paid users in the country. It will be seen if the company can maintain the same pricing here but still convert a free user to a paid one in under 12 months as it claimed was its average during its financial presentation yesterday.


Apple Music Hits 38 Million Paid Subscribers

Apple Music Hits 38 Million Paid Subscribers

Apple’s streaming music service now has 38 million paid subscribers, up from 36 million in February, the company said on Monday.

Apple is locked in race for subscribers with, Alphabet’s Google and others as streaming music becomes the dominant form of paid music consumption. Apple’s number compares to 71 million premium subscribers at the end of 2017 at industry leader Spotify, which plans to list shares in the coming weeks on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol SPOT.

Apple said Eddy Cue, senior vice president of Internet software and services, disclosed the most recent subscriber number for Apple Music at the South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas.

Amazon Music Unlimited has 16 million paying subscribers, and Pandora Media has 5.48 million total subscribers. Google does not release paid subscriber numbers for its service, Google Play Music.

Apple, Spotify, Google and other services charge $9.99 (roughly Rs. 650) a month for music. Amazon offers its service to members who already pay for its Prime membership, which includes shipping, video content and other benefits, for $7.99 per month.

In addition to its paid service, Spotify also offers an free ad-supported version to help draw users into the service. Apple Music does not offer an ad-based version and instead uses a three-month free trial to lure customers. Cue said Apple has 8 million subscribers currently in the free trial period, the first time Apple has disclosed the number of trial users.


Google Play Music for Android’s Latest Update Crashing for Some Users

Google Play Music for Android's Latest Update Crashing for Some Users

If you are yet to update the Google Play Music app for Android on your device to version 7.9.4920, which was released by the search giant on Monday, we would like to advise you to hold on for a moment. The latest update to the app is reportedly causing the app to crash as soon as the users try to open it.

After updating to Google Play Music version 7.9.4920, many users report that the app crashes before loading up. While we have experienced this on our own devices, Android Police has pointed out the issue is not universal but is being faced across devices and Android versions. The review section of the app on Google Play is already filled with negative feedback due to the crashing issues associated with the latest update.

If you have already installed the latest version of the app, you can uninstall the app entirely and manually install the previous version after downloading it from APK Mirror. If the app came preloaded on your device, you can disable it first and then install the new version after disabling auto-updates and downloading it from the link shared above.
Last month, Google Play Music started offering a four-month free subscription for new subscribers, allowing them to scan up to 50,000 songs from their music library. While the streaming service offered free subscription period to new users earlier as well, it was limited to just three months.

While the search giant is yet to roll out a fix for the problem, we will have to wait and see how long it takes before it does so. As this issue makes the app non-functional, it is necessarily required that the company issues a fix soon.


Theatre, fine arts, music: Co-curricular quota admissions to Ambedkar University from Friday


Students who have excelled in co-curricular activities (CCA) such as sports, theatre, fine arts, debating, creative writing, music or dance may find a special place at Ambedkar University, Delhi (AUD).

The university offers a few supernumerary (extra) seats for those who have great skill in these activities. The applications to these categories will open on Friday.

The online and offline applications to all undergraduate programmes at AUD will close on Friday, after which the students who have already applied can choose these CCA categories.

Applicants can download the CCA application from the website and submit a hard copy of the completed forms with relevant certificates of achievements and portfolio (if any) to the Dean of student services, AUD, by July 1.

Officials confirmed that admissions under this category will be open only to candidates who have already applied to AUD and whose names are not present in the first and second lists of the course/s they have opted for.

The first cut-off list is expected on July 5. The second cut-off list is expected to be released on July 10. Auditions for these seats will begin on July 11.

Candidates applying to the PG programmes under CCA should obtain the minimum eligibility scores in the written test and interview to be considered for admission.

For both PG and UG applicants, a weightage of 30% will be given for interviews conducted by the CCA/sports panel and the remaining 70% will be accredited to the trial result.

Public relations officer Anshu Singh said, “CCA seats are supernumerary. The BA (Honours) programme in Economics, English, Psychology and Social Sciences and Humanities have two seats in each programme under the CCA/sports category. The BA (Honours) programme in History, Mathematics and Sociology have one seat in each programme under the CCA/sports category as these programmes are offered only at the Kashmere Gate campus.”

MA programmes except performance studies, film studies, visual art and literary art have one seat per programme under the CCA/sports category, she said.

These provisions are, however, not available for students of the School of Vocational Studies, School of Culture and Creative Expressions and the School of Business, Public Policy & Social Entrepreneurship.