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In connection with the Swedish streaming giant Spotify reporting its fourth quarter figures, it was also revealed that the number of paying users is now at 96 million, writes Digital DI. The total number of monthly active users is now 207 million, which means an increase of 30 percent over the past year. The figures for the 4th quarter were better than expected. Operating profit for the 4th quarter was EUR 94m, the company’s first ever quarterly profit. However, the company forecasts that during 2019 they will make a loss of around SEK 3.8 billion.
Techcrunch reported that Spotify will take a harder stance on ad blockers. In an email to users, the music platform said its new user guidelines “mak[e] it clear that all types of ad blockers, bots and fraudulent streaming activities are not permitted.” Ad blockers have been a headache for Spotify. When preparing for its IPO Spotify said that it discovered two million users, or about 1.3% of its total user base at the time, had been using ad blockers on the free version of Spotify
Spotify has also confirmed that it has acquired podcasting companies Gimlet Media and Anchor for an undisclosed total fee, however acquiring Gimlet Media is believed to have cost the company SEK 1.8 billion writes Breakit. Spotify CEO Daniel Ek revealed that he expects that 20 percent of future content streamed will not be music, but rather audiobooks and podcasts. According to Ek, the acquisition is a step towards becoming the world’s leading sound platform.