Spotify CEO Daniel Ek’s Q&A on Twitter

Spotify CEO and founder Daniel Ek has been lurking on Twitter for some time, but following several Spotify stories in the press (such as this one on TechCrunch) he posted the following on Twitter:

I’m amused by all faulty rumors. However, lets try something new. Ask me and I’ll respond if you have questions about Spotify.

ek1What followed was an impromptu Q&A session where Ek answered each and every question tweeted to him over the course of an hour-and-a-half (including a couple from me). Ek seemed to enjoy the session (at one point saying “This is actually kind of fun“) and the tweets ranged from probing financial questions to queries on what his business cards looked like.

You can of course search Twitter for the full conversations, but here are all the tweets sorted into topics (and I’ve fixed the typos, added punctuation etc).

Spotify on Mobile

What are the chances Apple will approve the app?

I hope and think that they are quite big given that we have followed Apples guidelines notoriously. See this:

Will there be an Android client for Spotify soon? As a premium subscriber on T-Mobile, will I be able to use it?

The Android client is looking nicely. And yes our ambition is to offer it to all users. ๐Ÿ™‚

Is there a Windows Mobile version of the client planned to compliment the recently announced iPhone version?

We are looking at many platforms and obviously the big ones like Winmob.

How important is the Iphone App for getting people to signup for premium accounts?

It is a great platform and could potentially be huge. However I personally think Android will prove to be just as important.

Aside from iPhone and Android, what over mobile platforms are you deploying on in the next 9 months?

We are looking at all the major ones but some are closer than others …

When will we see a Java ME version of Spotify Mobile? (from SonyEricssonDev)

When we think user experience is good enough. We’d be happy if you would like to try and build it for us though ๐Ÿ˜‰

Artists & Labels

Why are some artists on Spotify but not others?

Depends on their rights/label rights. Lots of different reasons really. Wish licenses were easier :/

Do you have any guarantees from the record labels not to withdraw song or raise royalty fees in the future?

We have deals that gives us flexibility. But in the end we need to prove that “free” as a model works.

Are the artists paid based on how many times their songs are played, or is it a flat fee to the record company?

Paid by sharing our revenues depending on how many times a particular track is played. It is a good model. Big question however is if “free” potentially damages paid. Paid is better revenues.

Spotify’s Business Model

What is the biggest risk to Spotify?

Generating enough revenues for artists to see us as a viable platform. Always hard to get right with a “free” product

Do you see Spotify developing alone, or requiring input and idea-fusion from the likes of

We want to be a platform. But we will focus on delivering the music in as many ways as possible. Hopefully others can help

Do you have any plans for other than regular ads, i.e. sponsorships, alliances with brands etc.ย  for the free version?

In general we don’t think music should be free. For us it doesn’t matter how people pay. They can pay through ads, isp, brands etc.

Will $50m be enough to launch Spotify in the US?

$50M sounds like a lot of money ๐Ÿ™‚

So whatยดs the truth about you financing round? Is it closed? And can you comfirm that you plan to launch in the US early 2010?

Do you follow me on twitter? Think I mentioned something about the truthfulness of articles ๐Ÿ˜‰ US is def our aim for early 2010

Spotify the Company

How many people are employed by Spotify?

About 90 people. We are growing like crazy so probably soon 100

Spotify in Other Countries

When will Denmark get Spotify?

We’d love to offer it there but so far we have yet to agree with KODA ๐Ÿ™

Spotify Technology and API

What is the maximum bandwidth all servers have reached?


libSpotify was released months ago but only for Linux and with many restrictions. Are there plans to open the API a bit more soon?

I hope so. Let us know if you want it for more platforms.

Ideas and Suggestions for the Future

Will Spotify ever integrate with my music library? How about a tool to scan users library and say how many are available on Spotify?

Good idea on the second point. The first point is something we are considering but we want to do it right

When will Spotify have improved radio and recommendation features?

Shouldn’t be too far away. We have some really cool stuff in the lab

What about the Squeezebox/Squeezecenter and other living room platforms?

We want to be in as many places as possible. However it is important that the experience is Spotify-fast. Check out libSpotify!

Are there any plans in the future for Spotify to feature ‘friends lists’ so we can look at their tastes?

We are definitely looking at making it easier to share and explore your friends music. I grew up with the old Napster experience

Will Spotify ever have music videos and podcasts as well as music?

Might, but other stuff are higher up in our backlog

I really want Spotify Premium, but I don’t have a Visa or Mastercard. When will you support more payment options, ideally paypal?

hopefully soon