Spotify is expected to announce next week that the popular streaming service will offer limited free access via its mobile app. According to The Wall Street Journal, Spotify will launch its free mobile option at a press event set for Wednesday, December 11 in New York. The event was announced earlier this week with a brief press invite.
Currently, Spotify's mobile tier is only available to subscribers paying $10/month. Free, ad-supported access is offered on desktop and laptop computers, or $5/month for an ad-free tier.
A source tells TechCrunch that Spotify could offer more freedom to its mobile users as part of the new mobile option, when it comes to listening to their playlists or previously-starred tunes. The WSJ's sources say Spotify has been negotiating with the major labels over royalty rates for the free mobile service for almost a year, as well as how much on-demand control users will have.
The WSJ adds that the free mobile option will have a limited number of songs allowed on-demand, but primarily play songs recommended based on the user's tastes, a la Pandora.
Meanwhile, Spotify launched a new site this week, Spotify Artists, designed to offer better transparency into how its royalty payments for artists are calculated.