Well January 31st is upon us yet there is no sign that Spotify’s much anticipated launch will take place today, and as per sources from Spotify, it may not happen until as late as March 2019.
It seems that Spotify has deferred the January 31 launch because of a lack of licensing deals with Sony and Universal. Our sources tells us that a launch party for Spotify was scheduled to be held at Mumbai’s Famous Studios on January 31st, but was cancelled because the service is yet to secure deals with Sony and Universal. The source further informed us that the launch of the music streaming service is now set for March, but “nothing is concrete” and it all depends on how soon the service manages to close its deals.
Given this new information, it seems like our previous report on a possible January 31 India launch for Spotify was correct.
Spotify has been on a hiring spree in India and we also hear that the platform has been roping in employees from competing streaming services like JioSaavn and Gaana. As of now, Spotify reportedly has 300 employees working for it at its Mumbai office.
In terms of music licensing deals, Spotify has managed to secure a deal with T-Series, to bring the music label’s portfolio onto the streaming platform. T-Series has the biggest library of Bollywood songs and the deal spells a major acquisition of Hindi music for the platform, especially in the Indian context.
However, Spotify has to ensure it also equally caters to vernacular listeners in India with a good mix of regional music. Pricing of the platform will also be key to its success in India, given that services like JioSaavn are highly competitive. JioSaavn currently offers a library of 45 million songs in 15 languages, with expansion plans on the horizon.
When it launches, Spotify India will reportedly offer a trial period longer than 30 days. The platform did the same when it launched in Vietnam and South Africa last year.