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Spotify Sweetens Its Student Plans

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Showtime to enrich Spotify’s Premium for Students plan 

Spotify (SPOT) has sweetened its special service plan for college students with the addition of Showtime at no additional cost to subscribers. Spotify’s Premium for Students plan costs $4.99 per month.

A year ago, Spotify included Hulu in a bundle in its student plan. This plan has helped Spotify win over millions of customers, Alex Norström, Spotify’s chief premium business officer, told The Verge. Spotify believes the addition of Showtime could help it draw even more subscribers to its student plan.

The bundling of Showtime in Spotify’s student plan demonstrates how the company is leveraging partnerships to push back against its competition. Spotify is the leading streaming music service in terms of subscribers, making it the target of considerable competitive pressure.

Leveraging partnerships to fight competition

Spotify has partnered with AT&T (T) to bundle its service with its premium wireless plan. Spotify struck a deal with Samsung (SSNLF) to become the preferred music app on Samsung devices. Samsung is the world’s top smartphone company, shipping more than 320.0 million smartphones last year, according to Gartner estimates.

Spotify exited the second quarter with 83.0 million paying customers and 180.0 million active listeners in total. Apple has about 40.0 million paying customers, so it’s overshadowed by Spotify.

Partnerships: The new game

Spotify’s competitors have also taken to partnering to reach more customers. Pandora (P) has struck bundling deals with AT&T, T-Mobile, and Snapchat. Apple also has entered a limited bundling agreement with Verizon (VZ) that would allow Verizon Unlimited customers get a free six-month Apple Music subscription. Apple Music normally starts at $10 per month.

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