Spotify is seemingly making moves to crack down on people signed up to its family plan who don’t actually qualify for the package. The company has confirmed that it has been testing a way of identifying the location of all users on a family account through their GPS data.
Some users were reportedly recently sent emails telling them that if they did not confirm their location in this way they “may lose access to the plan”. This demand was then reported on in various places last week, with some raising privacy concerns over this approach. Spotify has since told Quartz that this was a test that has now ended.
The family plan allows six people to pay for access to the streaming service together for £14.99 per month – rather than £9.99 a month individually. Each person gets their own premium account with the same features as those paying full price. It’s no secret that some people use the family plan option to get cheaper access to Spotify Premium by signing up with friends rather than family members.
One of the main limitations of the group membership option is that all people accessing the service must live in one property, meaning actual family members based in different places don’t qualify, despite the package’s name. It was presumably this same property rule that the GPS tests were trying to enforce, by identifying whether users all had the same primary base.
Last month, Billboard reported that Spotify execs were concerned about rampant abuse of the family plan system and its impact on overall revenues, and on the average amount earned per subscriber, something that has fallen under the spotlight more since the firm’s listing on the New York Stock Exchange earlier this year.[from https://ift.tt/2lvivLP]