2M Spotify users downloaded a hacked app to block ads

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Leading up to the big day, Spotify made an interesting revelation, saying that around two million music listeners have managed to skip listening to ads without being a paid subscriber by using unauthorized third-party apps created to block ads.

It expects total monthly active users in March to number 168-171 million, including those who use the service for free in return for watching advertisements, up from 157 million at the end of a year ago.

Ads can be blocked by anyone on Spotify but the normal process is to make payments. The music streaming service provider did not reveal the specific ad-blocking apps that are able to let users bypass ads on its platform.

Back at the end of 2017, Spotify announced that they had roughly 159 million users using their service, with about 71 million of those being paid subscribers.

As the world's biggest subscription music service by members, Spotify has been a major force in a larger cultural shift in music.

These apps can essentially be seen as ad blockers for Spotify.

We already knew that Spotify was trying to guide public attention to its platform growth rather than profits, as it looks to out-maneuver rivals such as Apple and Google. The company expects to grow both monthly active users and premium subscribers by around 30 percent in 2018.

Today's update also predicted that monthly active users of Spotify will soar to over 200m this year, while even more people are expected to sign up to be premium subscribers with an increase of at least 30 per cent.

Music streaming service Spotify is gearing up for its direct listing launch on the New York Stock Exchange next Tuesday, April 3. A value deemed twice the number of paying subscribers on Apple, which had 36 million paying subscribers. Users evading ads still cost Spotify money, as the company pays a (small) amount to the artist for every stream of their song.

Operating losses are forecast to be in the range of 230 million to 330 million euros for 2018.