Spotify (; Swedish: [ˈspɔ̂tːɪfaj]) is a Swedish audio streaming and media services provider founded on 23 April 2006 by Daniel Ek and Martin Lorentzon. It is one of the largest music streaming service providers, with over 574 million monthly active users, including 226 million paying subscribers, as of September 2023. Spotify is listed (through a Luxembourg City-domiciled holding company, Spotify Technology S.A.) on the New York Stock Exchange in the form of American depositary receipts.
Spotify offers digital copyright restricted recorded audio content, including more than 100 million songs and five million podcasts, from record labels and media companies. As a freemium service, basic features are free with advertisements and limited control, while additional features, such as offline listening and commercial-free listening, are offered via paid subscriptions. Users can search for music based on artist, album, or genre, and can create, edit, and share playlists.
Spotify is available in most of Europe, as well as Africa, the Americas, Asia, and Oceania, with a total availability in 184 markets. Its users and subscribers are based largely in the US and Europe, jointly accounting for around 53% of users and 67% of revenue. It has no presence in mainland China where the market is dominated by QQ Music. The service is available on most devices, including Windows, macOS, and Linux computers, iOS and Android smartphones and tablets, smart home devices such as the Amazon Echo and Google Nest lines of products, and digital media players like Roku.Unlike physical or download sales, which pay artists a fixed price per song or album sold, Spotify pays royalties based on the number of artist streams as a proportion of total songs streamed. It distributes approximately 70% of its total revenue to rights holders (often record labels), who then pay artists based on individual agreements. While certain musicians have voiced objections to Spotify's royalty structure and its effect on record sales, others laud the service for offering a lawful option to combat piracy and for remunerating artists each time their music is played.
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