Music streaming company Spotify reported an 8 million rise in the number of subscribers to its premium streaming service on Thursday as it battles Apple's rival operation for dominance.

Spotify, which is headquartered in Stockholm, Sweden, grew its premium subscribers from 75m to 83m in the last three months, the company said. The increase of 8 million users was slightly above analyst expectations of a 7 million rise in paying subscribers, reports the Daily Telegraph.

"The business is performing to the higher end of expectations," chief financial officer Barry McCarthy said during a call with analysts on Thursday. "We're seeing faster growth in the paid business than we were expecting."

Overall, Spotify has grown its total customer base to 180 million subscribers, led by rising numbers in Latin America, according to its second quarter figures.

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The company offers free music streaming services supported by advertising but 90pc of revenues come from its premium paid-for service.

However, Spotify did see a drop in revenue growth, which it said was due to the introduction of the general data protection regulation in May. The business' second quarter revenue came in at €1.27 billion ($2.1b), up 26 per cent from the previous year.

"We did see some General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) disruption across our European markets during the second quarter but seem to be largely past that now," the company said on Thursday.

Spotify continues to face competition from Apple's rival music streaming service Apple Music, which said in May that it has 50 million paying subscribers, although that figure also included people on free trials.

In April, Spotify went public through a direct listing, which saw it list its shares on the New York Stock Exchange. The direct listing approach meant that the business both listed and offered shares at the same time without any underwriting assistance from banks.