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Monday, 22 October 2018

Spotify is Testing a ‘What’s New’ Timeline Feature to Promote New Releases

Music discovery is an important aspect for the streaming platforms out there, but so is keeping tabs on new music from artists you’ve already shown interest in.

Now, Spotify already has a way to address keeping tabs on new music thanks to its “Release Radar” playlist, and, in part, the “Discover Weekly” playlist as well. However, if new music isn’t picked up in either one of those playlists for your listening pleasure, then it can be kind of tough knowing when new music is dropping from artists you follow. (Spotify’s notification feature is hit-or-miss, too, this writer has found.)

Things could be getting slightly better in the future, though. The Verge has confirmed with Spotify that it is currently testing a new “What’s New” timeline feature within the app. The test is currently out in the public right now, as folks on Twitter have indicated, but there’s no indication on when the feature might actually launch to the public. It appears Spotify has been running the test for quite some time:

Here’s Spotify’s statement on the matter:

“We are always testing new ways to create better listening experiences for more users, while continuing to find ways to connect artists to their fans.”

As for the timeline feature itself, it will show artists that have released new music, whether it’s a single or a new album. It looks like it offers a quick way to jump into the new content, too, either by selecting the single or album itself, or hitting that play icon to start listening.

This seems like a solid new feature, so hopefully Spotify does launch it at some point in the near future.

Our Take

One of the reasons I continue to use Apple Music is the way it handles new music releases, but this pertains only to new albums from artists I follow or have shown interest in. The app will show new releases on the bottom, making it easy to see the public launches of new content. However, breaking things down a bit more and things get a bit rough, especially for singles. I don’t know if Apple Music notifies users of a new single release by a followed artist. If it does, I’ve missed it. And the “New Music Mix” playlist, which updates every Friday, is just not good enough in this regard, especially in comparison to Spotify’s “Release Radar”. Basically, I’d like to see Apple Music launch a similar feature as Spotify’s “What’s New” timeline, too.

[via The Verge; @heysuganth]

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