Can subscriptions be the lifeline for Facebook?

Can subscriptions be the lifeline for Facebook? Facebook’s data collection practices came under fire after the recent Cambridge Analytica scandal and CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s public testimony in front of the joint commerce and judiciary committee in the US raised some tough questions in front of the social media giant. In this week’s subscription roundup, we look at whether paid subscriptions can be one way for Facebook to retain its social media supremacy and trust in the aftermath of the scandal. In other news, Spotify and Hulu have teamed up to provide a monthly subscription bundle. Amsterdam-based cycle maker VanMoof has also announced a monthly subscription plan for its electric bikes. Lastly, we look at cryptocurrency project Electroneum’s new patent which promises to make cryptocurrency-based subscriptions a reality!


Should Facebook introduce ad-free subscriptions?

 
To support its vision of keeping a version of the platform free for its users, Facebook has traditionally relied heavily on advertising. This model allows Facebook to reap the benefits from the amount of time users spend on the platform. A parallel line of thought, however, says that the social media giant can give users a chance to opt-out of viewing ads based on their personal data, and move to a subscription model instead. With a monthly subscription fee, Facebook could easily decouple its business from the time spent metric, allowing it to keep revenue stable while empowering its users.
 
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Spotify and Hulu offer a monthly subscription bundle

 
Music streaming giant Spotify, which went public recently, has teamed up with video streaming service Hulu to offer a combined subscription bundle in the US. Users can subscribe to both services for $12.99 per month. The deal comes at a $5 discount to what users would pay for both services separately. The companies have been offering a similar package to students from last year. Is this a way to tackle the might of Amazon Prime and Netflix? We’ll wait and watch!
 
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VanMoof offers subscriptions for electric bikes

 
Amsterdam-based cycle maker VanMoof has announced the VanMoof+ subscription service for electric bikes. The subscription plan is built around a one-time fee and a monthly subscription rate which is much lower than the entry price for electric bikes. However, this subscription plan is unlike other bike-sharing plans. Instead of sharing a fleet of bikes, you essentially subscribe to one bike, with unlimited maintenance and theft protection. In that sense, it is closer to subscription plans offered by car makers.
 
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Cryptocurrency project Electroneum to support cryptocurrency-based subscription payments?

 
Electroneum, a cryptocurrency project which aims to become a digital payment solution, has secured a patent pending for a system that supports cryptocurrency-based subscription payments and instant cryptocurrency payments. In our 2018 Subscription Trends Report, we predicted that cryptocurrency-based subscription billing options will come to the fore this year. Will Electroneum be successful in bringing cryptocurrency-based recurring billing to the mainstream?
 
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Also read: Spotify makes its stock market debut


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