Spotify updates Windows Phone app to match iPhone/Android — except for free listening

spotify - no more limits 275wSpotify upgraded its Windows Phone app, putting in features that have been painfully missing for users of that platform (e.g. Radio, Browse, and Discover).

But one important feature is missing: Spotify Free. In the iPhone and Android versions of Spotify, users can listen to music in “shuffle mode,” which can include an artist’s entire recorded output. Spotify Free and shuffle mode were introduced with some fanfare on December 11, in a press event at the company’s New York office.

Founder Daniel Ek framed the introduction of Spotify Free as a turning point in how apps should present music: “The devices we use and the way we use them has changed rapidly,” Ek declared. “Smartphones and tablets are replacing computers at home. It doesn’t make sense to differentiate them anymore.”

In the Windows realm, the differentiation remains severe, as users reportedly must sign up for (or be members of) Spotify Premium ($10/month in the U.S.) to use the app at all.

While users are complaining in blog comments around the web, the lack of Spotify Free shouldn’t be a surprise; Spotify disclosed that missing feature when it pre-announced the Windows Phone app upgrade in February. The company also promised to deliver the free-listening option as on other mobile platforms, but the date of that upgrade was (and remains) unknown

Brad Hill