Spotify now allows you to buy music without leaving the program. DRM-free MP3s can be bought from 7digital, all within the Spotify interface.
Clicking the new 'purchase' button brings up a terms and conditions box to tick, followed by a checkout box that asks for your card details. Hit 'pay', and the track will download while you continue browsing. Your details are saved for future buying, on 7digital's secure servers. Spotify takes a slice from your payment -- another source of revenue, alongside advertising and premium subscription. Prices are the same as 7digital's, ranging from 50p to 99p.
Downloading automatically creates a Spotify folder in the 'my music' folder on your PC. Tracks are saved as 320kbps MP3s. A purchased list now appears in the Spotify interface alongside your home, radio and play queue. When you open Spotify on other machines, the tracks can be downloaded again. You can download each track between three and five times, depending on the record label. Tracks are DRM-free, so can be saved on as many computers or mobile devices as you like.
All tracks available from 7digital can be bought from anywhere within the Spotify interface, except the albums and singles in the 'what's new' section of the home screen. Spotify is working on this, and, in the meantime, these featured tracks can be searched for manually, if you have a desperate jones for some spanking new music.
Spotify told us that purchasing from theis "something we'd like to integrate". Apple would have something to say about buying from 7digital via an iPhone app, so does this mean a deal with iTunes is on the cards? "Watch this space," says Spotify. We certainly will.
Update: We initially reported that tracks couldn't be bought from search results, but, in fact, it's only the 'what's new' section that doesn't include a buy link.