Spotify is shaking up its free offerings as it grapples with a growing number of free users compared to paid subscribers.

Looking to boost its premium user base by converting free users, Spotify is experimenting with locking down certain features behind a paywall, with the lyrics feature being the latest to face restrictions.

Spotify trials limiting lyrics to paying subscribers

In a move as part of Spotify’s efforts to encourage free-tier users to upgrade to its paid subscription, free users of the streaming service have started noticing a change in the lyrics feature which displays song lyrics while playing tracks.

Instead of enjoying this service, some free users now encounter a message that reads, “Enjoy lyrics on Spotify Premium,” effectively locking them out of this feature.

CJ Stanley, Spotify’s PR executive, confirmed that this change is currently in the testing phase and is not yet permanent. Currently being trialled with a limited number of users in select markets, Spotify has not revealed further details about the experiment. However, this move does hint at the company’s intention to explore new avenues for monetization.

Over the past year, the number of users on Spotify has continued to grow, with its ad-supported tier reaching an impressive 343 million and increasing by a substantial 34%. However, the growth of paid subscribers has not kept pace, rising by 17% to 220 million.

This move to restrict access to its lyrics to paying subscribers only is a significant shift in Spotify’s strategy as the company seeks to strike a balance between its free and premium membership numbers.

By experimenting with features previously accessible to free users, Spotify aims to incentivize more users to subscribe, which would benefit both the platform and the music industry. While the future of this experiment remains uncertain, it is clear that Spotify is actively exploring ways to enhance its premium offerings and entice free users to make the switch.