Practical Nerd - The hidden price of “free” | Bad Spotify - I did not know that.

Google searching this time uncovered something not immediately disclosed by Spotify: the application employs built-in peer-to-peer networking technology to share streaming music from its cache on my computer with other Spotify users who want the same tunes, presumably taking the load off Spotify’s own servers. There’s almost no mention of this P2P functionality on Spotify’s own site. And no way to throttle or turn off the upstream P2P use in either the free or paid version which, probably, is a key part of Spotify’s business and technology model. (As is a large local hard disk cache, reportedly a minimum of 1GB. At least hard drive space is cheap.)

Spotify, effectively, shifts some of its bandwidth costs to users which, in a perfect world without relatively new Comcast, Verizon Wireless and AT&T bandwidth caps or tiered pricing, would not matter. Yet it does. No “free” streaming service is worth the risk of pissing off the Xfinity limit police and losing my Internet service.