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Spotify may offer free users better features in its mobile app

It could be made available at Spotify's April 24th event.
Thomas Trutschel/Photothek via Getty Images

Spotify might have more to show at its April 24th event than you think. Bloomberg sources have asserted that Spotify is preparing a new version of its free offering that would make it easier to use, particularly on smartphones. The revamp would make it easier to access playlists and would give you more control over what you hear on those playlists, more closely resembling the experience of a paid subscription.

The tipsters didn't say for certain that Spotify would launch this revised free access on the 24th, but the announcement is expected "within a couple weeks" -- it would be odd to unveil a major update like this separately from whatever else appears on the 24th.

The company has lately been willing to limit free users' access to new songs in a bid to both please labels and improve its bottom line, but it still has to cater to them. It's not just because they still outnumber subscribers (Spotify reported 71 million paying users versus 157 million total as of this writing) -- it's that the free tier is often the gateway to becoming a subscriber. The more alluring no-charge access is, the more likely it is that you stick around and consider paying to get unfettered listening. That's crucial when Apple Music is reportedly catching up to Spotify and could have more paying members (Apple's only option after the trial period) as soon as the summer.

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