After teasing a heavy dose of discovery and social features, Spotify has kept quiet in regards to when these updates will come to the public. Luckily, TNW managed to get into the serviceâs beta test, and is able to share with you a sneak peek at Spotifyâs soon-to-launch social features. Letâs dive right in:
Spotifyâs People tab will be replaced by the new Follow tab, which features basic profile details and recommendations. As far as Facebook is concerned, Spotifyâs integration had previously been (largely) limited to the right sidebar, but now itâs easier than ever to connect with Facebook friends and follow them separately on Spotify.
Itâs noteworthy, however, thatÂ Facebook now serves as a starting point â not a core element. Facebook independence is particularly important for Spotify, as relying solely on Facebook has recently proven to be a terrible idea.
Hereâs what Spotifyâs People tab previously showed for me. Yes, it was useless:
Back to the Follow tab, as shown in the top screenshot: My Facebook friends using Spotify have been highlighted randomly, and below it, Spotify has recommended musicians as well. The service also decided to auto-follow musicians I have starred.
The New Profiles
Hereâs what my profile looks like now, followed by the original design for comparisonâs sake.
Note the addition of Recent Activity and follower counts.
Friends and musicians are now integrated together and may be able to interact with each other, recreating a bit of Myspaceâs old magic from its prime. Hereâs what the musician profiles look like:
The above artist, Kendrick Lamar, was recommended to me in the right sidebar and features a verified check mark similar to what youâd find on Twitter. For most other artists, that mark wasnât yet present.
Lastly, after some digging, we discovered that these profiles contain links which reveal Spotifyâs plans to launch public Web profiles. For now, theyâre barren, but weâre expecting to see recent artists, followers and other details upon launch. Take a look at mine here.
Unfortunately, weâre unable to share anything new in regards to Spotifyâs upcoming discovery features, but what weâve seen looks quite interesting. You can take a peek at what weâve learned so far here.
As with the introduction of Facebook integration, Spotify users may temporarily revolt over these new features, but itâs important to remember that music is inherently social. Musicians craft their work to share it with the world, and thatâs something the Web and connected applications do best. Now, instead of burning a mix and passing it onto a friend, youâll be able to share playlists with thousands.
This move could place Spotify in a completely new role, as a service which connects artists with fans, and lets record labels market new talent directly to listeners. Interestingly enough, musicians and individual users wonât be the only ones allowed on Spotify soon: brands like Esquire are already showing up as recommendations.
Yes, now the world knows I like to listen to Ke$ha at the gym, but theyâll also notice I have a thing for Ben Kweller, Sigur Ros and Mum.
Goodbye privacy. Goodbye piracy. Music is going full social.
Image viaÂ khrawlingsÂ / Flickr