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Spotify tests full-length music videos to take on YouTube

The Swedish giant is testing a new premium feature that could heat up the music streaming wars.

In a move that could intensify competition with YouTube’s dominance in the music video space, Spotify is rolling out a limited beta test of full-length music videos for its premium subscribers. The Swedish music streaming giant aims to diversify its offerings and attract more users as it strives to reach its ambitious goal of 1 billion users by 2030.

The beta launch will initially be available in select markets, including the UK, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Poland, Sweden, Brazil, Colombia, Philippines, Indonesia, and Kenya. Premium users in these countries will gain access to a curated catalog of music videos from global artists like Ed Sheeran and local favorites.

While Spotify has previously experimented with shorter “clips” under 30 seconds, this move represents a more significant foray into the realm of music videos, which YouTube has dominated for nearly two decades, offering a vast library of videos for free.

Spotify’s expansion into music videos comes as the company faces increasing competition from rivals like Apple Music and seeks to maintain its growth trajectory. In its latest quarterly forecast, Spotify predicted its premium subscriber base would reach 239 million, surpassing analysts’ estimates.

To watch music videos on Spotify during the beta test, premium users in the selected markets can access the “Switch to Video” toggle on supported tracks through their iOSAndroid, desktop, or TV devices.

“So many times in my own experience and for countless others, music videos play a key role in hooking you: taking you from being a listener to leaning in and becoming a fan,” says Charlie Hellman, Vice President and Head of Music Product at Spotify. “They’re an important part of so many artists’ tool kits, and it’s a natural fit for them to live in the same place that more than half a billion people choose to listen to music.”

How to watch music videos on Spotify:

– Premium users in eligible markets can access the “Switch to Video” toggle on supported tracks
– Music videos will play within the “Now Playing” view
– Users can switch back to audio-only mode or watch in full-screen landscape mode on mobile devices

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