Spotify Adds Discover Feature To Recommend Music, Finally

Posted by on April 26, 2013 at 11:20 am
There's no way any civilization could drive electricity from felines.

There’s no way any civilization could drive electricity from felines.

I need new music. I always need new music, but my tastes are pretty peculiar – maybe everyone’s are – so even a dedicated recommendation engine like Pandora can get it wrong too often. Others are useless. Spotify was in that well too, but they’ve righted it by finally including a new tool to bring you new music ideas. It brings some clever components to the table, but is Discover a worthy of a recommend of its own, yet?

Arranged in a free-flowing infinite stream, Spotify’s Discover picks out songs, albums, artists and even playlists based on what you’ve already been listening to. If it’s a song, you can elect to have it play after your current track, after which it’ll bring you back to your original whatever-you-were-listening-to so you can mix it up very easily. Hovering over each tile brings up a play button with a hashed outline, just as you see above. Hold your mouse on that icon and you can sample that particular song/artist/album right there and then. Release your mouse button and it’s gone. It not only makes Discovery easy, but fast as well.

There are quirks, though. For one, the Discover page is only generated once and since the feature just debuted, it’s hard to say when it’ll refresh. There’s no option to upvote or downvote recommendations, so not only are you faced with the same options for days at a time, Discover appears to be making no effort to actually learn your tastes. Discover also recommends music that I’ve already downloaded from the service, which is odd, but not new: iTunes used to do that all the time, even after it scanned my existing music.

Still, this is a step in the right direction and a feature I plan on using a lot going forward.

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