Spotify has added a new audiobook subscription tier, dubbed the Audiobooks Access Tier, offering a slightly less expensive but more limited option for users interested in streaming audiobooks on the platform.

Spotify's current plan offers users two options: pay for a Spotify Premium subscription at $10.99 a month, which includes 15 hours of audiobook listening in addition to ad-free music streaming, or purchase individual audiobooks on Spotify's website. For a $10.99 add-on, Premium users may "top off" 10-hour blocks if they want to keep listening.

The new plan knocks down Premium prices by a dollar, to $9.99, and offers the same 15 hours of listening, but without ad-free music streaming options. "To sign up for the plan, listeners will need to go outside of the app to subscribe to this tier, just like they do for a la carte audiobooks, in order to avoid having to pass on Apple’s fee to our users," Spotify wrote in its news release about the new service.

Spotify launched its audiobooks service in the U.S., U.K., and Australia last October to much fanfare, but it has not been cheap: the company reported that startup costs associated with audiobooks contributed to the company's $81 million operating loss in Q4 of 2023, according to the Guardian. Over the same period, the company increased the number of Premium subscribers by 10 million in the quarter, bringing total paid subscribers on the platform to 236 million.

The new tier may be an effort to convert free users to paying customers; as the release also notes, "since launching Audiobooks in Premium, we’ve seen a 45% increase in free users searching for and interacting with audiobook content each day."