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Spotify Premium now in India at Rs 119 per month, no forced shuffle for Free users

Spotify has launched in India, even as its legal fight over streaming rights with Warner Music continues. Spotify Premium comes at a monthly subscription of Rs 119, and a yearly subscription of Rs 1189. 

  • It is also available on plans of 7 days, 3 months, and 6 months, for Rs 39, Rs 389, and Rs 719 respectively. 
  • Students will get at 50% off of Premium plans; monthly plans for students at Rs 59
  • Spotify Free is available without forced shuffle, every song available on-demand (Which is interesting, given its recent move where it would kick you off the platform for having adblockers.)
  • Spotify is streaming music in Hindi, Punjabi, Tamil, and Telugu
  • Spotify launched with several playlists including for Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, and also for rap, Punjabi music etc. 
  • One-time payments can be made via Paytm and UPI, apart from debit/credit cards

Spotify’s India head Amarjit Batra said that the service launched just as K-pop becomes more popular, Punjabi music gains ground, and Indie artists increase. The service will also curate “Starring” playlists for music centred around an actor.

News of Spotify’s India launch first surfaced in November last year, although Spotify struck a deal with T-Series only last month. It also secured deals with Universal and Sony Music. Early in January, Spotify had also accidentally let out a launch date of January 31, 2019, when it updated the end user agreement of India users.

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Streaming rights battle with Warner Music

According to a Times of India report, the Bombay High Court refused to grant a stay on Spotify’s launch after Warner Music filed an injunction for doing so. The court asked Spotify to deposit Rs 6.5 crore in court, clearing the way for it to launch in the country. Warner Music had taken Spotify to court to restrain it from streaming music from its catalogue via a statutory license. Although negotiations for streaming rights were ongoing between the two for months, Spotify said that Warner had backed out at the last moment, after which Spotify filed for a statutory license under the Copyright Act, 1957. 

The Bombay HC judge hearing the matter, Justice SJ Kathawalla, had asked both parties to see if they could resolve the matter, per TOI. After they couldn’t, the court has posted the matter for hearing after four weeks. The court has directed Spotify to file its reply within three weeks, and Warner Music to then file a rejoinder within a week thereafter. Spotify is now available in 79 countries, with 200 million users and 87 million subscribers.

Also read:
– Here is what Spotify will be up against in India
– From July 2018: US labels blocking Spotify India launch because of direct licensing from artists: Reports

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