As Spotify gears up for its first-ever U.S. press conference in New York City on Wednesday, speculation is heating up about exactly what the streaming music service will announce.
All Things Digital is reporting that the company is likely to announce that third-party developers can make Spotify’s music library available to their own users. These users would then in turn have to pay Spotify for privileges. However, Spotify declined to comment on whether the event will include news about the company expanding its application programming interface (API).
It’s also rumored that an iPad app and a new music store where members can purchase songs directly from the service could also arrive. The latter is a more likely guess since it’s already possible for European Spotify members to buy songs from the streaming service.
Spotify – which arrived on U.S. shores just four months ago – sent out press invitations last week announcing that it has “exciting news” to share about a “new direction” the company is taking. The event called “What’s next for Spotify?” will stream online and should feature a special guest or two, along with CEO Daniel Ek.
Spotify has been under pressure recently from competitors such as Google Music, the recently-unveiled free service that allows users to upload, share and browse songs, and then listen to them on the go via cloud storage on Android devices.
There has also been an increase in concern among music partners about the impact of streaming on their business. More than 200 labels and publishers pulled out of various streaming services, from Spotify to Napster and Rdio, after a study claimed streaming music was hurting record sales.
Since this will be the company’s first time addressing the press in this manner – it didn’t even hold a press conference for its U.S. launch – buzz surrounding the event has been big.
Some experts believe that if Spotify opens up its platform to third-party developers, the music industry would be more open to a “music everywhere” concept, similar to how the TV industry gave cable customers access to watch TV programming online and via iPad apps, according to All Things Digital. The move could also entice more Spotify users to sign up for paid accounts instead of using its basic free model.
Spotify’s business is growing fast, helped along by its expansion onto Facebook. In addition, the company recently announced that its premium subscription growth doubled in the last year to 2.5 million, making it the largest music subscription service on the Internet. But with the addition of third-party developers having access to the site’s catalog, the growth could be much larger.
“What’s next for Spotify?” will kick off at 11:30 a.m. EST on Wednesday and Mashable will be there live blogging the event.
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