How Does Spotify Know Where I Live?

August 19, 2023
David Sunnyside

When you sign up for a Spotify Premium Family account, you have to verify your address. This is to make sure that only members who live at the same address use the plan. Spotify also uses this data to detect fraud and abuse of the service, such as families with two separate addresses signing up for the same account.

The company is cracking down on the misuse of its Family plan. A new set of terms and conditions that came out last month requires the primary account holder (and all other family members) to show proof they live under one roof in order to continue using it, CNET reports. The verification process will involve Spotify checking the GPS coordinates of every device that accesses the app or website and then asking users to verify their location from time to time. The company briefly tested this feature earlier in the year but ended the test after privacy concerns.

This new policy will force a lot of people to ditch their Family plans in favor of individual subscriptions or switch over to rival services that are more lenient with family sharing. It will also be difficult for families that don’t live together—like kids going off to college or separated parents whose children take their phones with them to listen to music at work, school, and friends’ houses.

Currently, Spotify verifies locations by using the billing address associated with the payment method used to purchase the subscription. However, the new terms of service suggest they will also check the actual home address of each member from time to time.

David Sunnyside
Co-founder of Urban Splatter • Digital Marketer • Engineer • Meditator
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