In a bid to expand its presence in India, Swedish music streaming giant Spotify has announced that its application will soon be available in 12 regional languages. This includes Hindi, Gujarati, Bhojpuri, Kannada, Malayalam, Marathi, Odia, Punjabi, Tamil, Telugu, Urdu and Bengali.
The announcements were made during the company’s live-streamed event, Stream On, on Monday.
The platform’s interface, the company said, will be launched in 36 new languages worldwide -- including the 12 Indian ones -- and take the total number of supported languages to over 60.
The platform recently completed two years in India. Netflix, another global digital content provider, took over four years to launch localised Hindi UI.
Additionally, Spotify said that it is set to enter over 80 new markets, representing a population of more than a billion people. This expansion, when completed, will make the service available in over 170 markets around the world.
The company also announced a partnership with Anchor and WordPress, which will allow creators to turn written content into podcasts and vice versa; expanded its SoundUp initiative for budding podcasters to 14 countries, including India; and launched the Spotify Audience Network, which would be a dedicated marketplace to allow advertisers buy across original, exclusive and independent podcasts.
Moving ahead, the company said it plans to focus on a deeper, more active curation of music in regional languages, such as Kannada, Bhojpuri and Bengali, while gearing up to launch the next set of Original podcasts for India, including I Hear You, Phobia and Jurm Live.
Commenting on the developments, Gustav Gyllenhammar, vice president for markets and subscriber growth at Spotify, said, “... We are building a borderless audio ecosystem at two levels [for India] -- a seamless experience at a local level, through our product, content, and access to the right tools, and at a global level, through strategic interventions where we can take Indian talent to international listeners.”
“We are here for the long term, and there is no doubt that India has been one of our fastest growing and most important markets,” he said.
Citing an internal research report, the company said that the love for its brand has increased by over 3x in India. Initially, it said, a young audience drove the platform in the country, but in 2020, those over 35 also came onboard.
“Over two years, we’ve gained insights on how our listeners here consume music and podcasts, and tapped into these learnings to establish a deep relationship with listeners, creators, and brands,” Amarjit Singh Batra, managing director (India), Spotify, said. “Through 2020, we dove deeper into local languages and regions with our communication, content, and curation. As a result, Spotify was streamed in over 3,000 cities in India.”
Globally, the platform’s library contains over 70 million tracks, 4.5 billion playlists, and over 2 million podcasts, made by over eight million creators. The service competes with YouTube Music, Apple Music, Amazon Prime Music, JioSaavn, Gaana and Wynk Music.