Popular music-streaming service Spotify has denied that its new paid-for download service was created to divert consumers away from free subscriptions.
The company rejected the suggestion as it announced that users can now download playlists to their computers and then listen to their favourite music while offline – but only if they pay £10 a month.
Spotify offline is already available to users who are temporarily unable to connect to the internet while listening to music via mobile phones such as the Apple iPhone.
Spotify opened for free registration in the UK back in February 2009, but it says that huge demand for the service has led the Swedish company to operate an invite-only system – unless you pay £10 a month for the premium service.
Read the Which? guide to listening to free streamed music online with Spotify
A spokesman for Spotify told us: ‘The invite system was put back on to ensure that the great user experience, which we’re known for doesn’t suffer as we’ve been adding a lot of users (both free and premium) since we launched out mobile apps.’
He added that the listening offline feature was not designed to alleviate pressure on the service. He said: ‘It’s a widely requested feature and proven to be very popular on the mobile version of Spotify so we decided to extend it to the computer version as well.’
The offline listening application allows users to store up to 3,333 tracks offline on up to three mobile handsets and three PCs.
Read Which? MP3 player reviews and mobile phone reviews to find the best devices for listening to music on the move.
How to follow the latest Which? Tech news
Are you a Twitter user? Follow WhichTech on Twitter for regular tech tweets.
Prefer RSS? Don’t miss a thing with the Which? tech RSS feed.
For just the main headlines in newsletter form, sign-up to our weekly Which? tech email.
Apple iPad 2 3G data plans compared – find the best 3G plan for your iPad
Best Android tablets round-up – we look at the best iPad alternatives around
Best cheap laptops for under £500 – find the best laptop deals