Spotify Is Upgrading Its Family Plan

Spotify is currently running a new test of family plan features in Ireland, with some enhancements geared towards parental oversight.  As part of the upgraded offering, for example, parents can set up an explicit content filter on their children’s accounts, blocking explicit content. The filter is password-protected, so only parental accounts can access the feature.Spotify first introduced its family plan in 2014 by allowing six people to share a $14.99 monthly subscription. But despite being called a family plan, until now, the subscription tier has had few family features. Spotify has only required that all six ‘family’ members need to live in the same place, but that requirement has been easy to game.

The loose restrictions have led to a rampant sharing of Family Plan subscriptions with friends and close acquaintances.  After years of abuse, Spotify has engaged in more stringent IP checks to crack down on fake families.

During Spotify’s last Q2 earnings report, the company even blamed account sharing for a revenue drop.  A recent report showed that revenue per listener has been on the decline since 2015, thanks partly to gamed accounts.  Spotify knows this, and they’re planning on jacking up the price to compensate.The streaming service recently tested a family plan price increase in Norway — but the change largely went unnoticed amongst price-insensitive Norwegians. Now, Spotify is testing the price hike across the rest of Scandinavia. Reports suggest the price hike could be as high as 13% in that region, though Spotify has declined to comment.

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