On the heels of Spotify’s controversy regarding royalties and artist payouts, the music streaming service has announced a new, free version of the app for mobile platforms that functions as shuffle-only. In other words, Spotify has released a direct competitor to Pandora and iTunes Radio for mobile devices – you can shuffle your own music, your own playlists, and playlists from people you follow, but you won’t be able to listen to songs in an order that you choose. It seems, at this point, like a simple volume play, as the company looks to increase its listenership across platforms so as to eventually convince them to pay for subscriptions. Whether it can compete with the already-established radio app ecosystem will, in large part, determine the success of the new system.
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