March 10, 2023
Spotify is changing the main homescreen of the app to make it easier for people to find new music and videos to listen to and watch. The new layout has a lot of pictures and scrolling that goes up and down. This makes your home screen more like TikTok and Instagram and less like a list of album covers.
Spotify wants to make it easier for you to find new music all over the Spotify ecosystem as you scroll. At its Stream On event, Spotify just showed off its new look. It shows what Spotify wants to be as a company and a product. In the last few years, it has spent a lot of money on podcasts, audiobooks, live audio, and other things to try to be more than just a music app.
The company also wants to give creators a place to live. Daniel Ek, the CEO of Spotify, told The Verge that he hoped there would be more than 50 million “audio creators” on the platform in 2021. Spotify has also been trying for years to make video podcasts a reality, but for now it mostly just watches YouTube do it.
All of that is a lot to put into a single app called Spotify. Spotify has been trying hard to get people to watch and listen to more unique and profitable content. This has made it hard to listen to music a lot of the time. So, it looks like the new design of the app is partly meant to make room for all of these new kinds of content.
Spotify has been trying for years to find ways to put podcasts, music, and other things next to each other. But it seems to have figured out that the best way to do this is to give each thing more space. The album and playlist covers will still be at the top when you open Spotify in the future. But below that, you might see a video podcast that starts playing on its own and that you can skip to with a tap.
Or you might see a big picture that looks like it came from Instagram and is meant to tell you more about a playlist you might like. If you tap “Music” or “Podcasts & Shows,” you’ll go to a vertically scrolling feed that looks more like Instagram Stories or TikTok. If you tap “Music” or “Podcasts & Shows” at the top, you’ll be taken to a feed that scrolls vertically and looks more like Instagram Stories or TikTok than the Spotify you’re used to.
Only that part of Spotify is covered by this feed. You can scroll through as many as you want, and each one will play automatically to show you what it is. You can also tap on one to save it or find out more about it. Spotify wants to make the app more relaxing and easy to use. They also want to find new ways to get people interested in new things.
This gives the design a clear sense of tension. Now more than ever, the app plays content automatically, and there are many ways to quickly look at songs and playlists without going all the way in. Full-screen vertical scrolling is used everywhere now, and it’s clear that it’s a good way to find things.
People all over the world are used to having to swipe through a dozen things they don’t like before they find one they do. And with this new look, every song, playlist, or podcast has a little more time to grab your attention. Playlists have been Spotify’s main and, for all intents and purposes, only way to find new music, but the new design focuses a lot more on getting you interested in new things.
That makes a lot of sense for podcasts, where Spotify has spent a lot of money and needs to find ways to get it back. Ek may have said he made a mistake by spending so much money on new kinds of audio, and the company has cut back on its team in that area, but that doesn’t mean he’s slowing down.