Sony replaces its own Music Unlimited service with Spotify app on PlayStation

Markets Associated Press

Spotify is coming to the PlayStation, replacing Sony's own Music Unlimited service, as the company continues to expand the game console into an entertainment hub beyond video games.

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Spotify hits the PlayStation 3 and 4 on Monday, with a new app adapted for large television screens. Sony says partnering with Spotify expands its music service to 41 countries, rather than the 19 available with Music Unlimited, and offers better tools for playlists and music discovery.

PlayStation users have long been able to watch DVDs and stream Netflix, Amazon and YouTube shows with the console. Just two weeks ago, Sony launched an online television service, PlayStation Vue, offering more than 50 over-the-air and cable channels starting at $50 a month.

Spotify has 60 million active users worldwide, including 15 million paid subscribers. Its music app is available on some Internet-connected TVs and set-top boxes, but Spotify says it worked closely with Sony to optimize its service for the PlayStation. Notable features include: the ability to listen to music while playing a game and still listening to sound effects, or automatically pausing the game while changing volume or playlists.

The service is free with ads, or costs $10 a month for a premium ad-free version that offers offline playback. Although free users aren't allowed to choose specific songs on mobile devices, they will be able to on the PlayStation, just as they now do on traditional computers.

Customers who do not already have a Spotify account can sign up on the PlayStation. Existing Spotify customers will get access to the PlayStation app with their usual sign-in. Music Unlimited subscribers won't be automatically switched over; those that subscribe on other devices such as Sony phones, will need to get the Spotify app.