By: Nicole Vasarevic

Spotify has finally made its way to Canada, and is expected to make big waves.

Even though the company has kept its launch on the down low, only allowing individuals who have received an invitation to join, it has not gone unnoticed. Spotify is a free live streaming service that allows users to listen to, save, and follow songs, playlists and artists. The best part being, unlike songza or 8tracks, Spotify allows you to skip and repeat songs as many times as your music hungry heart desires. But how do the company and artists featured make any money?

Even though Spotify hasn’t made a comment on this, I doubt it’s a coincidence that Spotify introduced itself to Canada shortly after Canadian royalties announced that artists will be paid 10.2 cents for every 1,000 plays they get on their songs in Canada.

Spotify also runs on an ad market. If you are a free user — and let’s be real, most of us won’t shell out for a premium account — an ad plays after every few songs. The company also profits from ad clicks that are displayed on the service, just like Facebook. Users can have ad-free listening only if they upgrade to premium for $9.99 a month.

After getting my own account, I quickly began to tell everyone about this music streaming app that has changed the way I listen to music. The mood playlists have soundtracked everything from my study sessions to an embarrassingly large amount of cliché girls nights. It has also made the rare times I do go to the gym actually bearable with some excellent workout playlists.

I thought the only way all this could get better was with the Spotify mobile app but I was a little disappointed. Unlike the unlimited freedom Spotify gives on a laptop or tablet, the phone app does not allow you to choose specific songs to listen to. It only allows users to shuffle an artist, album or playlist and it gives limited skips. These things can all disappear, however, with the upgrade to premium. The app sucking the life out of your phone battery and shutting down every ten songs will remain—not exactly selling traits, especially if you pay $9.99 a month for the premium experience.

Spotify itself is innovative in its free live streaming music capabilities, with over 40 million users worldwide. It is the next big player in Canada’s music streaming industry, but it definitely needs to make a few changes before being publicly released in Canada.

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