Spotify HiFi is the popular music streaming service’s long-anticipated entry into CD-quality streaming. The tier was announced over two years ago now and promised to launch sometime in 2021… and yet we still don’t have it (more news on the delay below). It is definitely still coming through, Spotify confirmed recently, and it could be called Spotify Supremium. When it does finally arrive, it should (fingers crossed) be worth the wait.
Spotify’s HiFi is set to offer an upgraded listening experience for Spotify Premium subscribers who opt for a pricier plan. This enhanced service promises higher-quality, lossless audio streams through Spotify Connect. Recent rumors suggest that HiFi might be integrated into a ‘Platinum’ or ‘Supremium’ service, introducing additional features like expanded playlists, podcasts, and improved usability.
The journey to Spotify HiFi began with user demands for high-quality music streaming, culminating in the official announcement at the ‘Stream On’ event in February 2021. Despite glimpses from leaked videos, concrete details such as pricing, launch dates, and full device compatibility remain undisclosed. Speculation and leaks, however, provide some insights into what to expect.
Initially promised for a release “beginning later this year” in 2021, Spotify HiFi faced delays, and as of the end of 2023, it is yet to launch. Spotify’s CEO, Daniel Ek, cited licensing negotiations and ongoing dialogues with music labels as reasons for the delay. Despite earlier hopes fueled by leaked videos and icons spotted in the app, a clear release timeline remains elusive.
Recent developments suggest a potential shift in branding to ‘Spotify Platinum’ or ‘Supremium,’ with leaked survey information hinting at a premium tier priced at $19.99. The delay is attributed to Spotify adapting to industry changes, possibly prompted by competitors like Apple and Amazon offering lossless streaming at no extra cost.
Technologically ready for over a year, Spotify HiFi’s release may vary across markets, with the US and Europe likely being early adopters. The rollout could also depend on device compatibility, favoring newer Connect-enabled devices.
As for pricing, predictions range from £15 / $15 / AU$20 to £20 / $20 / AU$25, considering the competition’s offerings. The pricing strategy will play a crucial role in HiFi’s adoption, especially considering Spotify’s large existing subscriber base.
A potential free trial is anticipated to attract both existing Premium users looking to upgrade and new users interested in higher-quality audio. Competitors like Amazon Music HD and Tidal have previously offered free trials to entice users.
Regarding streaming quality, Spotify HiFi aims to deliver lossless audio with CD quality, a significant improvement over the existing Premium quality capped at 320kbps. However, technical details, including bitrates and file sizes, remain undisclosed. The absence of support for hi-res audio, as seen in Tidal and Qobuz, indicates that Spotify HiFi may focus on CD-quality streaming.
While Apple Music offers a range of higher resolution audio tiers, Spotify has not clarified its stance on supporting new and immersive audio streams like 360 Reality Audio, spatial audio, and Dolby Atmos Music. The industry eagerly awaits further details and a concrete release date for Spotify HiFi.
While the release date for Spotify HiFi remains uncertain, it is clear that the platform aims to deliver a high quality audio experience to its users. The predicted price range suggests affordability and accessibility for many music enthusiasts. With promises of lossless, CD-quality sound, Spotify is set to redefine the way we listen to our favorite tunes. As we anticipate further updates and official announcements from Spotify on this exciting new feature, let’s keep an ear out for more news. Stay tuned for more updates on this game-changing technology in the music streaming industry.