Spotify Deletes Its App Platform, Offers Developers Inferior Alternative
Please note: Future releases of the Spotify Desktop client will no longer feature an App Finder tab and will no longer support the presentation of Spotify Apps, therefore this feature has been discontinued.
That was the message from Spotify that greeted app developers late last week.Three years after Spotify declared that apps from outside developers would revolutionize its platform, the music streamer kicked the dozens of startups who listened and believed to the curb.
Why? "With the growing importance of mobile and many of you asking for the tools to build apps outside of our desktop platform, we recognized the need to make a new set of APIs and SDKs available," wrote Spotify. "These would ensure the Spotify platform remained relevant and easy to develop on, as well as enabling you to build innovative and engaging music experiences."
The Alternative: Spotify launched a new Web API and mobile SDKs for iOS and Android in June. But it does not yet support full song streaming – just 30 second snippets. Still, some strong apps have been built using the new API. Examples cited by Spotify:
- BBC Playlister lets you explore and save music from the BBC to Spotify.
- Soundhound enables you to identify a song by listening to it. Once the song is tagged, you can easily add it to your Spotify library without ever leaving the app.
- Swarm.fm lets you discover and explore music from your friends. Swarm.fm launched as a Spotify app and moved out to the web once the Web API was made available.
Spotify may have just created an opening for its competitors to embrace and encourage apps from outside developers.