Spotify to test full music videos in potential YouTube faceoff


The Spotify logo is displayed on a screen on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S., May 3, 2018. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

(Reuters) - Swedish music streaming company Spotify is rolling out full-length music videos in a limited beta launch for premium subscribers, venturing into an arena that YouTube has dominated for nearly two decades.

Music videos will be available to premium users in the UK, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Poland, Sweden, Brazil, Colombia, Philippines, Indonesia, and Kenya, in beta starting on Wednesday, the company said, as it attempts to grow its user base.

While it aims to reach 1 billion users by 2030, Spotify's new plan faces competition from Apple Music and Alphabet's YouTube, which allows users to watch music videos for free.

Spotify's roll-out will include a "limited catalog of music videos, including hits from global artists like Ed Sheeran ... or local favorites like Aluna," it said.

In March last year, Spotify had introduced "clips", under-30-second vertical videos that are uploaded directly to Spotify for artists.

The company has also expanded its offerings to include podcasts and audiobooks in a bid to attract more users.

In February, it forecast premium subscribers would reach 239 million in the current quarter, above estimates of 238.3 million.

(Reporting by Arsheeya Bajwa in Bengaluru; Editing by Devika Syamnath)

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