An Updated version of this article is here: Spotify Bitrategate, The Story So Far
Spotify introduced 320K streaming back in June 2009. Since then, no official statement on the conversion progress has been made. The closest I can find is on their support forum, GetSatisfaction, Spotify employee Andres said about 60% of their music were available in 320k. That was from one year ago.
So, as a premium user, what would you expect now? 80%, 90% or all Spotify music is available in 320K streaming?
I did a simple test: After restarting my Macbook, I use a freeware, MagicanPaster Lite to monitor the internet traffic. I save a track to offline playlist, and the downloaded data shows the file size of this track. Below is the reslut:
New singles, from Spotify's official playlist: New Singles on Spotify
1, Bombay Bicycle Club – Shuffle 7.16 MB, 160K
2, The Saturdays – Notorious - Chuckie Remix Radio Edit 4.13 MB, 160K
3, Rastamouse – Hot Hot Hot! (Single Version) 8.74 MB, 320K
4, The Japanese Popstars – Joshua (Radio Edit) 3.97 MB, 160K
5, Natisse – Fly Me Back To Heaven (Original Radio Edit) 3.75 MB, 160K
New albums, from Spotify's official playlist: New Album Releases on Spotify
1, Beyoncé – 1+1 5.36 MB, 160K
2, Biffy Clyro – The Captain - Live At Wembley 5.06 MB, 160K
3, Foster The People – Helena Beat 5.24 MB, 160K
4, Kaiser Chiefs – Little Shocks 4.34 MB, 160K
5, Limp Bizkit – Introbra 5.93 MB, 320K
Random, from Spotibot's random album of the day:
1, Sylvie Bodorová – I. Allegretto giocoso (Trio for Violin, Cello and Piano) 3.05MB, 160K
2, Homero Prado – Morena Morenita 2.64 MB, 160K
3, Memin – Que Tu Te Vas 6.70 MB, 160K
4, Life After Life – Harrahya 5.49 MB, 160K
5, Giddy Motors – Magmanic 5.39 MB, 160K
Top singles, from the Top Lists in Spotify's What's New page (location: everywhere)
1, Pitbull feat. Ne-Yo, Afrojack & Nayer – Give Me Everything 11.51 MB, 320K
2, LMFAO – Party Rock Anthem 5.84 MB, 160K
3, David Guetta – Where Them Girls At (feat. Nicki Minaj & Flo Rida) 4.21 MB, 160K
4, Jennifer Lopez – On The Floor - Radio Edit 10.54 MB, 320K
5, Swedish House Mafia – Save The World (Radio Mix) 4.35 MB, 160K
Top albums, from the Top Lists in Spotify's What's New page (location: everywhere)
1, Veronica Maggio – Satan i gatan 7.96 MB, 320K
2, Bruno Mars – Grenade 8.81 MB, 320K
3, Rihanna – S&M 5.24 MB, 160K
4, Katy Perry – Teenage Dream 4.73 MB, 160K
5, Pitbull Featuring Vein – Mr. Worldwide (Intro) 3.83 MB, 320K
Classical music: randomly picked by me.
1, Sergio Azzolini – Concerto RV481 in D minor - Allegro 4.39 MB, 160K
2, Hugh Maguire – Don Quixote, Op. 35, TrV 184 : Introduction 5.21 MB, 160K
3, Sir Colin Davis – Berlioz: Symphonie fantastique, Op.14 - 4. Marche au supplice (Allegretto non troppo) 8.40 MB, 160K
4, Itzhak Perlman;Erich Leinsdorf – Violin Concerto, Op. 35 in D: Canzonetta: Andante 13.18 MB, 320K
5, Alliage Quintett – Overture (from "Ruslan and Ludmilla") 10.92 MB 320K
6, Thomas Fey – Sinfonia in D major, Hob.Ia:7 (alternative Finale of Symphony No. 53) 4.46 MB, 160K
7, Robert Tear – Parry: Bright Star 3.24 MB, 160K
8, Liza Ferschtman – Violin Concerto in F sharp minor: III. Allegro capriccioso 5.38 MB, 160K
9, Ildebrando d' Arcangelo – Mozart: Così fan tutte, K.588 / Act 2 - "Donne mie, la fate a tanti" 3.90 MB, 160K
10, Amy Schwartz Moretti – Jules Massenet: Meditation from "Thais" 6.14 MB, 160K
All tested tracks are in this playlist: 320K Test.
For the non-classical stuff, only 7 out of 25 tracks are in 320K. And other than the random tracks, which is all in 160K, all other songs are selected from their newest/hottest catalog.
For classical music, it seems that only the Sony catalog is available in 320K.
If you are a premium user and also angry about this, please do something to persuade Spotify to speed up the long overdue conversion to 320K streaming. Please ask questions on GetSatisfaction, Twitter, Facebook, Quora or contact their customer services, let's hope our effort would make Spotify more transparent to users. Thanks.
I made a collaborative playlist: Classical Music available in 320 kbps. If an album sounds like 320K to you, just add it in and I'll listen and/or test. Thanks.
An updated version of this article will be published soon. Stay tuned.