Spotify to Launch “Supremium” Tier with HiFi Audio

Audio content giant Spotify is reportedly planning to introduce a more expensive premium tier called “Supremium” that will include HiFi audio, as revealed by Bloomberg.

Currently, Spotify’s existing “Premium” tier is priced at $9.99 for individuals and $15.99 for families. To maintain the appeal of the Premium subscription plan after introducing “Supremium,” Spotify will grant Premium subscribers extended access to audiobooks, either through a specific number of free listening hours or titles.

The integration of audiobooks is expected to roll out in the United States in October, with other markets receiving both the free audiobooks and the new plan earlier.

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While Spotify Premium still costs $9.99 per month, its maximum streaming quality is limited to the “equivalent of 320kbps,” likely compressed as an MP3. In contrast, Apple Music Lossless and Amazon Music HD/Ultra HD offer streaming specifications starting at 16-bit and 44.1KHz, with less compression and optimized delivery through data-efficient codecs.

Given that Spotify Premium is only $1 cheaper than Apple Music, it is highly probable that Spotify’s forthcoming “Supremium” tier will be priced higher than Apple’s competing service. The launch of Spotify’s premium plan is expected to occur this year, commencing with non-U.S. markets.

Amidst significant investor pressure to boost profits following a period of prioritizing user base expansion, Spotify has strategically leveraged original and exclusive podcasts to drive its revenue. However, as the company seeks to venture into the realm of audiobooks, it encounters challenges from established players, most notably Amazon’s Audible. While the move may seem like a logical progression, competing against well-established competitors poses a formidable hurdle for Spotify.

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