Spotify Support to me

show details 23:49 (9 hours ago)


Hello again,

Thank you for the further investigation. I am not however obligated to tell you exactly what our equipment is doing all the time, but I will forward this issue to the dev and content-departments to see what they have to say. I cannot promise you an answer or any further explanation but if I do learn such a thing, I will contact you again!

Kind Regards,


Spotify Support team

JUL 11, 2011  |  10:41AM CEST


Thanks for the reply. However, I did a simple calculation:

A ordinary dual-core home computer can convert a 10-track (40-minute) frin

flac to q9 ogg (320k) in two minutes. 12 seconds for one tracks.

You have 15,000,000 songs in your catalog.

There are 60*60*24*365*2 seconds in two years.


So it takes three home computer to complete the converting in two years. I

guess one 8-core workstation will do.

So the lacking of time and equipment doesn't explain this problem to me. You

really couldn't spend a couple of minutes to convert a high profile release

like Beyonce's 4? Before you told Premium users it's a Premium exclusive


Dear customer service, I am under the impression that the person who gave

you the answer was not fully aware of how serious this problem is. Please

let them know that this answer really doesn't help if this case went wild.

Please let me know when you get more information. Thanks.



- Hide quoted text -


Thank you for your message and your interest in clearing things out! You and the community posts you referred to, are correct in most cases. But I will however tell you a couple of things I just learned that will work as kind of an official response in the matter.

As you stated, all music we get is in lossless format. All music is intended to be converted to all three qualities. We get thousands of songs each day, and the converting process is always chewing new data. Surely we might need to upgrade and enhance our methods and equipment to make this go faster, but for the time being, I can tell you we're doing all we can to provide the users with 320 k ogg vorbis on every song!

Hope this answer was sufficient enough for you!

Kind Regards,


Spotify Support team

JUL 09, 2011  |  03:56AM CEST

Hi John,

I think the premium users deserve a better answer than what you gave me. As

I said, my source told me Spotify get Flac from content providers and

convert to ogg (with encryption) by themselves. I simple cannot understand

how could this converting process drag so long. A couple of laptops can

complete the task, in two years.

It's not something like gapless playback or iPad app that Spotify could

ignore, it's not a feature request, but giving Premium users what they are

paying for. In another word,* I think Spotify is in the danger of getting

accused for false advertising here.*

I want to emphasize that: you are perfectly OK not giving users gapless

playback or iPad app, at most you lose some customers, anyway you cannot

please them all with scarce resources. But this is different: it could get

into a lawsuit and you might even have to refund premium users if the case

went wild. I really don't want to see that happens, I still think that you

are the best music service and hope you become even more awesome.

I believe the majority of Spotify premium users are under the impression

that most of Spotify's catalog is already available in 320 kbps. Because

after they announce the news in June 2009, most media press and online

sources just refer to the Premium sound quality as 320 kbps, without noting

that not all tracks are currently available in HQ.

A few examples:

Spotify Blog:

"Initially, not all tracks will be available at the higher bit rate.

We’ve begun converting the most popular tracks first and over the next few

of weeks and months we’ll be adding more and more high quality tracks until

the entire catalogue is available in hi-fi."


"...or optional q9 (approx ~320kbit/s) for Premium subscribers, the highest

streaming rate for any online service."


"Initially the most popular tracks will be available at the higher bit

rate, with the entire catalogue converted to 320 kb/s over the next few



"Currently we offer the option of listening at 320kbps on Spotify

Premium and we use the Ogg Vorbis codec, which is considered to be very good

amongst audiophiles," defended Söderström.

Yes on their official site: do declare

that "not all tracks are currently available in high

bitrate". But from a consequentialist's point of view, this is still de

facto false advertising. How many Premium users would expect that azfter two

years, even the majority of new and Premium exclusive contents are only in

160 kbps?

I ran some more tests to check how many tracks are in 320 kbps on Spotify,

and the statistics can be found at:

Kind Regards,


Spotify Support team

JUL 04, 2011  |  01:40PM CEST


I talked to a friend in licensing business, who had licensed contents to

Spotify before, he said the music they provided Spotify, and all other

streaming services was in lossless format.

To me that seems more possible. It would be a tough job for labels to

provide you 96k(mobile)160k/320k ogg files, and at the same time provide

Apple 256K AAC files, Amazon 320K MP3 file...

If the contents you get are in flac, please convert them to 320K ogg, I

really don't think that should take this long.

If the labels only give you 160K ogg, well, I guess you need to tell them

better quality is definitely a very important reason for people to go/keep

on using premium. Thanks.




I am sorry I was unclear, the quality issue has not that much to do with actual licences, but rather which copies the labels hand us with. The goal for us is to obtain ALL music in HQ, but at the moment not every record is available in multiple qualities.


Kind Regards,


Spotify Support team

JUL 04, 2011  |  12:28PM CEST

Hi John,

Thanks for your reply. So, for Spotify, 320 kbps contents need different

license than 160K? I find that hard to believe. Beyonce's new album 4 was a

Spotify premium exclusive, available to premium users a couple of days

before it's CD/iTunes release, and you can't stream it in 320K?




We aim to have all the world’s music available at Spotify in HQ. We are still in the process of acquiring licenses to all music in the world (!), therefore it is possible that you won’t be able to find some of your favourite artists or tracks in HQ right now. We are signing new labels and adding a great amount of new tracks every week. Hopefully your favorite music will be up and running in 320 kbps soon.

In the meantime, check back at the forum for topics on content.

Kind Regards,


Spotify Support team

JUL 02, 2011  |  12:16PM CEST

Original message

Options: [Question] [Premium] [] [MacOSX] [Premium] [int]


320k streaming was introduced in 2009, yet based on my experience (I am a premium user and enabled high quality streaming for my desktop client), many albums (I mainly listen to classical music) still only offer 160k streaming.

I know it\'s a time-consuming task to upgrade the back catalog, but it\'s already been two years. And even many new albums came only in 160k.

I tested two new albums from 2011:

I saved both album to offline playlist, and the data downloaded for each album is only 75-85 MB. So they are 160k.

Why? How much more time do Spotify need to upgrade all files to 320k?

I also posted this question on Quora: