Spotify users waiting to learn when the service’s delayed “HiFi” premium audio service will materialize currently remain none the wiser, after the company responded noncommittally to requests for more information on its user community forums.
Back in February, Spotify announced plans to introduce a “HiFi” premium tier by the end of 2021. According to Spotify, the feature will offer CD-quality music that will let fans experience more depth and clarity in their favorite tracks.
However, 2021 came and went with no sign of the high-bandwidth audio experience on Spotify and no update from the company on when it would launch. Understandably, Spotify users recently took to the service’s community forums to ask for more details, to which Spotify responded:
We know that HiFi quality audio is important to you. We feel the same, and we’re excited to deliver a Spotify HiFi experience to Premium users in the future. But we don’t have timing details to share yet.
First reports that Spotify was working on a lossless audio version of its streaming service appeared almost five years ago, when the company started testing the option with a small group of users.
Back then, promotional screens pitched the “Spotify Hi-Fi” tier as a $5-$10 upgrade to a standard Spotify subscription. However, based on the wording of its latest update, Spotify looks unlikely to offer it as a paid-for upgrade when it does launch, especially given that Apple Music includes lossless listening options as part of its standard subscription price.
Add to that the fact that Amazon has since stopped charging extra for its own lossless music library, bundling its “HD” tier into all standard Amazon Music Unlimited subscriptions instead, which makes the idea of Spotify asking users to pay more for a similar service seem like a non-starter.
In May, a tantalizing hint emerged that Spotify was on the cusp of launching its lossless plan after a glitch in the Spotify app briefly surfaced a hidden HiFi media playback menu.
However, Spotify’s unintentional teaser last year came to nothing, and users of the streaming service remain as much in the dark now as they did then about when the surface will eventually appear.