Over the last two months, Spotify has dabbled with in-app paid virtual concerts. Now a new report from The Information says that the streaming service is exploring not only getting further into virtual events but possibly live events as well. If successful, the potential move could mean another revenue source for Spotify, improved artist relationships, and a way to differentiate itself from Apple Music.

Sources close to the matter told The Information that with Spotify considering a serious entry to the events business, it would use the rich data from its platform to help artists plan and host virtual and maybe even live concerts.

For the May and June mini virtual concerts it recently held, Spotify sold tickets at $15 each. Today’s report says Spotify is exploring continuing to sell tickets for potential future events which would offer a new source of revenue for its streaming business that is notorious for running on thin margins. However, it might not make a big difference to Spotify’s bottom line in the short or medium term.

If the business took off longer term, the move could help Spotify diversify its revenue beyond what it has to currently share with the music labels, following its nearly billion-dollar expansion into podcasting. But the medium-term revenue impact is likely to be minimal, as Spotify isn’t planning to try to compete with the giants that dominate the major-events business, such as LiveNation and Anschutz Entertainment Group, the people said.

But two more notable benefits would be an opportunity for Spotify to improve its relationship with artists and help them decide where to play shows as well as set itself apart from Apple Music.

Instead, the music-streaming service thinks there is an opportunity to use data about listening habits to help music artists plan concerts in less populated areas, markets that are too small for big headline performers and big companies. That approach would help Spotify demonstrate to artists how it can help their careers. And by offering tickets to its own events, Spotify can help differentiate its streaming service from that of its big rival, Apple Music.

Apple used to hold its live annual iTunes Music Festival, renamed to Apple Music Festival before being canceled after a decade-long run in 2017.

There have been a variety of Apple Music events over the last couple of years, including free concerts in Apple Stores. But nothing regular like the paid virtual and live concerts Spotify is considering.

In other Spotify news, the company is moving closer to launching its HiFi service:

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Michael Potuck

Michael is an editor for 9to5Mac. Since joining in 2016 he has written more than 3,000 articles including breaking news, reviews, and detailed comparisons and tutorials.