Spotify is hoping to shed many of its free users and convert them to a paid plan, under new plans reported by Digital Music News.

According to the report, Spotify is planning to limit the number of tracks available to those on free plans, giving paid users access to exclusive tracks, much like other services such as Apple Music and Tidal.

Both Taylor Swift and Prince have pulled their music from Spotify due to the company’s policy of letting free users access the entire catalogue of tracks.

Taylor Swift was all too happy to put her songs on Apple Music however – despite the number of users currently paying for the iPhone-makers’ subscription service totalling at zero.

Spotify’s decision will mean that certain releases will only be available to users paying to access the streaming service, or severely limiting the time period it is available to free users.

Facing increased competition from the likes of Amazon, Google, Tidal and Apple, Spotify is fighting to keep its over 75m users, while increasing the number that pay from the current 20m figure.

Plans have yet to be finalised, with one suggestion being that high-profile albums will be limited to free users, giving them access to one or two songs, while making the whole album available to paid subscribers.

According to sources, Spotify is planning to roll out the new restrictions in ‘early 2016’; that is if existing record labels sign a deal with the music streaming service.

Spotify has supposedly proposed new deals to the big three labels, including Sony Music Entertainment, Warner Music Group and Universal Music Group, although as of yet all three have not signed those deals.

October 1 is reportedly the deadline for all the record labels to renew, so Spotify will need those labels to sign by then, or face losing much of its 30m-strong library.

One senior executive is said to be against any changes however.

“(Spotify CEO Daniel) Ek hates that idea, and I mean hates it, but he may have to give an inch on that one,” states another source close to the negotiations.

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