Spotify Finally Caves

Headphones are seen in front of a logo of online music streaming service Spotify in this illustration picture

Spotify, after years of resisting the move from artists, is about to change a major part of their free tier: soon they’ll allow artists to restrict some albums to the paid tier only.

Spotify’s free tier has been a topic for debate for years. It’s why Adele’s 25 wasn’t initially available on Spotify. It’s why Taylor Swift still isn’t on Spotify. And it certainly made it easier for Chance The Rapper to sign a $500 million 2 week exclusive with Apple Music last year.

As I’ve mentioned in the past, the problem with Spotify’s business model is that the free tier is too similar to the paid tier. You don’t get enough of a difference for $10 a month. Now that Spotify has 50 million paid subscribers, it’s in a position where it needs every new album, as soon as it’s available.

There’s no word yet on when this tier split will take place, or exactly how it will work, but keep an eye out in the coming months.