Thursday, April 17, 2014
Spotify’s recent changes follow in Beats Music’s footsteps
Last week Spotify released a series of updates to their web and mobile apps. So far I like what I see, not because it’s anything new but after seemingly taking cues from (1st) RDIO and (now) Beats Music, Spotify continues to shift their emphasis towards improving and beautifying their user interface. In short: they are moving away from being just another glorified music spreadsheet. Sounds harsh but that’s what most streaming music services have been since the days of Napster and Kazaa: a musical Excel document.
The 1st thing I noticed is that they seem to have borrowed a thing or two from Beats Music, a new sleek dark UI being one of them. Another feature I liked most about Beats Music is that you could save songs and albums to your Library for easy access on and offline. A bothersome point about Spotify was that the service led users down a hole of creating numerous irrelevant playlists. Most users’ playlists would be favorite or “remember to listen” albums saved for quick & easy access. This would make user profiles filled with generic playlists built with no real thought or purpose while simultaneously diluting playlist search results.
Now users are able to save songs and albums to a personalized music Library. This simple feature allows Spotify & Beats users quicker access to favorite songs, albums, and artists without having to search or scroll through all their random playlists. It just makes more sense. Where Beats wins though is the ability to sort your library categories by Date Added, Most Played, Least Played, or A-Z.
Mobile: Spotify (top) vs. Beats (bottom; sorted by recent adds)
Below is a screenshot of SocialSoundSystem’s updated public Spotify Playlists after I’d gone through and deleted all the extra album playlists. As you can see, it is now filled with playlists with a little more purpose, substance, meaning, and curation.