What happened 8Tracks?

Back in 2015 and 2016 spending days in the University library studying or doing an assessment task I always had 8tracks up and playing. 8tracks was a place to find the peaceful, calming music very much far from the main genres. I choose 8tracks mostly for the study/focus music but it also was free and Spotify at the time was full of ads interrupting your listening.

Transitioning out of University I picked up Spotify premium thanks to my mobile plan having it unmetered and recently I got a flashback and went back to check on my old friend 8tracks.

Upon going to 8tracks I immediately read this

8tracks pay wtfYou have to pay for unlimited, ad interrupted streaming from 8tracks now. It seems they moved to this pay to play model late 2016. I fully understand wanting to and needing to make money but there are ways to do this without wrecking what you had and driving your users away.

Ads at the end of every few songs, fine. Ads on the website, fine. $2 per month for unlimited ad free music, fine. $4.99 per month for this, not fine. 8tracks isn’t Spotify they need to realize this, they are a place to find curated playlists of unique artists and genres.

8tracks user base would pretty much consist wholly of college students, the 17-23 age group. Nothing more yet we have them turning once what was a free to use platform into one that is heavily focused on getting money from a segmentation that isn’t rolling it in.

When you have the main player Spotify costing not that much more but filled with way more features, content and compatibility it’s a bad move.

When you have YouTube picking its game up and having many many music playlists for free! its a bad move.

8tracks you made a bad move. Perhaps the ship had sailed on 8tracks and they wanted to see out their last few years losing users and getting the odd penny. Whatever the case 8tracks went down the wrong path and its going to get them.