Spotify's has shot to the top of the iTunes App Store, and quite right too. Now the initial novelty of streaming music to your Apple or Android mobile phone has worn off, we decided to find out what you can and can't do with the app.
Do I need an invitation?
For a free account, yes. For a Premium account, no. For a while, UK users didn't need an invite, but they were reinstated on 10 September.
How do I get higher quality music?
Sign up to Spotify Premium, and you can get music streamed at 320kbps. However, many Premium users may not be benefitting from this, as you have to manually turn it on. Simply click on Edit > Preferences and tick the box marked 'Enable high bitrate'.
How many songs can I save?
As well as streaming music over a data network, Spotify mobile allows you to cache tunes for offline listening. You can cache up to 3,333 tracks.
How many computers can I use the app on?
To use the app, you must be a Premium subscriber. Once you've signed up, you can cache songs on up to three computers. Once you download the app, you can store tracks on up three computers and three mobile phones.
Hang on -- can't I just tell my friends my password?
By signing up you promise not to, but technically you could. It wouldn't do you much good though, as you and your friends wouldn't all be able to listen simultaneously. Playing a song on any of the three computers or three mobile devices pauses playback on any other install, so you can only listen on one at a time. You aren't logged out, music is just paused. You may be able to work around this if you're listening offline on a mobile device, but note that when we tried to simulate that, by putting our iPhone into aeroplane mode, the app wouldn't work at all.
Can I transfer my cache to another device?
No with a capital No.
How long does my subscription last?
Spotify Premium costs £10 per month. The money is simply taken each month, so you're not locked into a contract. There is an annual subscription, but it costs £120 per year so there isn't much incentive to lock yourself in.
Can I cancel?
If you're paying monthly, you can cancel whenever you like -- just go to Help > Your Account, and when your account details open in your Web browser click the link for manage subscriptions and payment. Your subscription will run its course to the end of the month you've paid for, and will not renew automatically at the end of the month. You won't get a refund, so get your money's worth and keep using it until the end of the month.
What does Spotify do with my data?
Personal information will not be shared with third parties except to perform a "market survey measuring your experiences of the service". Spotify itself collects "information about your use of the application, service and Web site, including personal information such as media that you access, queries you make, date and time of your request, your Internet protocol address, performance of your network and computer, your browser type, language and identifying information, your operating system and application version." Phew!
I have a beef with Spotify. Can I sue?
Spotify takes no responsibility for technical hitches, or discontuing features or particular music. Your only recourse if something changes, according to the T&Cs, is to simply stop using the service. If you were to take the company to court, it would be in Sweden.