Spotify is apparently entertaining the idea of launching a subscription podcast service as it looks to build out an empire beyond streaming music. The alleged service was hinted at in a survey from Spotify seemingly designed for market research.
The survey, spotted by Andrew Wallenstein of Variety’s Intelligence Platform, indicates Spotify is considering four subscription podcast plans, ranging in price from $3 to $8 per month. The most expensive plan would feature exclusive content, early access to some episodes, and no ads. The cheapest option, meanwhile, would offer access to exclusive interviews and episodes, but there would still be ads.
The price of Spotify’s subscription podcast plan would come in addition to a premium music subscription, which starts at $9.99 per month. It’s unclear if Spotify is considering any music and podcast bundles. Currently, Spotify offers access to thousands of podcasts for free.
In a statement to The Verge, Spotify said that the survey doesn’t necessarily mean a product will be released.
“At Spotify, we routinely conduct a number of surveys in an effort to improve our user experience,” the statement said. “Some of those end up paving the path for our broader user experience and other serve only as important learnings.”
Spotify has made podcasts a major part of its platform over the past few years, notably signing exclusive deals with Michelle Obama and Joe Rogan. The company is seemingly so confident in its podcasts that it believes people would consider paying for the content.
Spotify is already the largest music streaming service on the market and is steadily building up a massive podcast audience. With a user base already in place, there’s certainly be a big opportunity for Spotify, because as The Verge points out, it could make money without having to pay any licensing fees or royalties to stream the podcasts. It may not be a matter of if, but when.