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In the middle of its legal battle, Spotify quietly launches in India
- Spotify is officially available in India.
- Unfortunately, the Premium membership options are only available to existing Spotify users.
- The launch comes as Spotify is in a legal battle with Warner Media Group.
India residents clamoring for Spotify to be available in the country, rejoice — earlier today, the popular music streaming service quietly launched in India. The strange thing about the launch is that it happened as Spotify is contending with a legal challenge from Warner Music Group.
India residents can buy a Spotify membership in one-day, one-week, one-month, three-month, six-month, or one-year increments. Here are the prices:
- One day: 13 rupees (~$0.18)
- One week: 39 rupees (~$0.55)
- One month: 129 rupees (~$1.81)
- Three months: 389 rupees (~$5.48)
- Six months: 719 rupees (~$10.13)
- One year, 1,189 rupees (~$16.76)
If you’re a student, you can get a one-year membership for 59 rupees (~$0.83) a month. If students want to just try it for 30 days without committing to Spotify, they can pay 66 rupees (~$0.93) for 30 days. Everyone else gets a 30-day free trial, after which they pay 119 rupees (~$1.68) each month.
Curiously, Business Insider India reported that a Premium subscription is only available to existing Spotify users. New users can still sign up for the free tier, but they’ll have to wait if they want a Premium subscription.
Also, the only way to pay for a subscription is with Visa or Mastercard. Prepaid plans also have Paytm and UPI payment options, in addition to Visa and Mastercard.
As nice as it is for India residents to officially get Spotify, the launch comes at a curious time for the music streaming service. Yesterday, Warner sued Spotify to stop the latter’s use of the former’s catalog. The issue is Spotify tried to gain the rights to Warner’s catalog through an amendment to India’s Copyright Act of 1957. The amendment lets broadcasters obtain licenses without consent from the copyright owner, but it’s unknown whether Spotify can be classified as a broadcaster.
Until a decision is made on the matter, Bombay’s high court allowed Spotify’s India launch to proceed. However, Spotify launched in India without Warner’s catalog. Warner/Chappell is Warner’s publishing arm and hosts artists like Katy Perry, Kendrick Lamar, Fat Joe, and many others.