Spotify cracks down on friends who share family plans



Spotify send emails to Premium for Family subscribers asking for GPS verification

Music streaming giant Spotify has sent emails to some users of “Premium for Family” plan in the US and Germany asking them to prove their home address with GPS location. Apparently, the move by Spotify is an effort to reduce the number of friends sharing discounted plans intended for families rather than signing up for individual memberships.

According to Spotify’s Premium for Family Terms And Conditions, “all account holders must reside at the same address to be eligible for the Premium for Family Plan.” However, several Family subscriptions have reportedly been used by groups of friends.

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For those unaware, Spotify’s Family Plan in the US lets customers pay $14.99 per month for up to five premium accounts. According to the company’s website, two to five people on each family plan must live at the same address. In fact, Spotify’s small print does mention that the family plan is available for “you and up to five people who reside at your same address.”

In other words, as per the rules, everyone should be living together in the same home as a family, and everyone’s location should be the same.

Those users who don’t confirm their home addresses through GPS data will lose access to the plan, state Spotify’s email. “If you don’t confirm, you may lose access to the plan,” the email stated.

Some Spotify users took to Twitter to complain that many modern families do not live at the same address. On the other hand, some users also raised concerns specifically with privacy questioning that Spotify does not have the right to track individual listeners.

When reached for comment, a Spotify spokesperson said that the verification request was a test in four markets (including the US). Spotify is currently testing improvements to the user experience of Premium for Family with small user groups in select markets. We are always testing new products and experiences at Spotify, but have no further news to share regarding this particular feature test at this time,” the spokesperson said. Apparently, Spotify has now concluded this test.

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