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19th of July 2018

Gadgets



Spotify tests stripped-down lite version of its app

Spotify

Spotify is eager to add to its 170 million monthly users, and it's testing a new way to get there. Android users in Brazil (or perhaps elsewhere if you know where to look) can try Spotify Lite, which pares down the main app to something less storage and data hungry. Spotify says it works on all Android phones and in all network conditions.

The app lets you set a limit on the mobile data it gobbles up each month, and, along with how much storage it's using, it shows you how much of your data allowance you have left before it's time to turn the calendar page. That's a solid idea, and it'd be a welcome addition to the main app for many.

Spotify Lite weighs in at just 15MB, compared with the main app's 100MB, so, inevitably, Spotify has nixed a bunch of features. Offline playback, extreme quality playback and Spotify Connect (which streams your audio to an external speaker) are all gone. Perhaps more egregiously, it seems there's no real benefit to having a Premium account with Spotify Lite, because you can't pick specific songs to play, including in playlists. It's all shuffle, all the time.

Spotify is following in the footsteps of other major apps which have lite versions, including Facebook, Messenger, Uber and, more recently, Instagram. It's a move that makes sense, but it seems getting to use Spotify in emerging markets, where connectivity can be less reliable or powerful, will require some sacrifices.

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