Among all the hullabaloo on December 11, however, Spotify also let it be known that it was removing the 10-hour monthly caps from free accounts on the Web and desktop services. This pretty much just applied to a handful of countries in Europe (including the UK) and Asia, and was more of a legacy from an old system it had never quite done away with.
In those countries, under the old system, once a 6-month unlimited, ad-supported grace period had ended, users would be restricted to 2.5 hours a week streaming – to encourage them to sign-up to a premium package. If you were based in the US, however, this won’t have meant much to you, given that caps have never been in place anyway.
However, earlier this week, Spotify made the announcement again, which was seemingly more of a friendly reminder that any country that did have the streaming caps in place on the free Web service, would no longer do. Again, this didn’t include the US because it never had restrictions in place.
With Rdio announcing a free Web-based streaming service in the US this week, and Beats Music on the horizon Stateside too, there has been a lot of chatter about the significance of Spotify’s latest ‘move’ from a US perspective.
Spotify’s shift to free mobile-streaming last month was certainly a notable, major step. But just to reiterate, nothing has changed with Spotify’s Web and desktop streaming service in the US this week – there was never any time-restricted streaming in place for free accounts.