Sonic Charmer doesn’t bother to buy music anymore, because hey, it’s on Spotify for free. How long can this go on? Not very, he suspects:
What’s going to have to happen, at some point in the near future when Spotify/The Powers That Be have determined that Spotify’s market (for lack of a better term) penetration is big enough, is that Spotify is going to slap a fee even onto all of its “free” users.
Yes, X% will revolt and cry foul and curse Spotify and vow to never use it again, but (1-X)%, having gotten the Spotify habit, will acquiesce and pay, and that tradeoff will be worth it to The Music Industry, so they’ll do it.
At which point, you have to wonder about pricing. There already exists a pay service called Rdio, which charges $5 a month for Web streaming, $10 if you also want it to come to your mobile, matching Spotify’s current pricing for “premium” (read: “no ads”) service. Being one of those old mossbacks who still buys stuff, I’m probably not in the target market for either service — but things are changing so quickly that at some point I may have to pay attention, if nothing else.