In a move that will inevitably be seen as a response to the recent hype around mFlow and their ‘Social Music Store’, Spotify have announced a raft of new features today. The most significant of these is surely the ability to share your own Spotify ‘Profile’ with your friends – turning Spotify from a music player in to a social platform of sorts.
If you don’t have the time (or the ability – office blocking Spotify?) to read about all the new features, you can watch this cheesy video from Spotify to find out more:
If you have a little more time though (or can’t stand the cheesy nature of the above video…!) here’s a rundown of the new features:
- Starring of tracks – this is pretty common-place in most music applications now, but until this point Spotify hadn’t given users any functionality to mark tracks that they like (other than adding them to playlists). This has now changed with the introduction of star ratings (albeit only a single star!)
- Connecting with Facebook – Spotify now uses Facebook Connect to link itself with your social networking profile, allowing you to import friends, publish stories and share playlists. (NOTE: I gave this feature a go and either nobody I know on Facebook is using Spotify yet, or this isn’t working…!)
- Sharing of tracks – The new ‘inbox’ feature isn’t (as you might expect) a messaging service, but instead a facility to allow you to share tracks with your friends. Quite neat really.
- Import your own music – This is a real doozy, especially if (like me) you frequently find yourself frustrated that a music label has removed your favourite tracks from Spotify. Either by adding files manually, or synching with iTunes, you can now add all of your local music files to Spotify. I’ve not figured out yet whether you can make these songs part of public playlists though…?
- Syncing with mobile devices – Again, I’ve not tried this feature myself yet due to issues with my iPhone and my work PC, but this should allow users to make their own MP3 files available on their mobile Spotify account, which you can play through the Spotify iPhone application and others.
As you can see, Spotify is becoming a lot more ‘social’ – and it looks like they’ve got dominance of iTunes in their sights. They undoubtedly already have the weight of a whole load of social ‘influencers’ behind them, but only time will tell if this is enough to take on the mighty Apple…Tweet