Apps, Mobile & SMS

New ‘Friends’ tab and CEO Daniel Ek signal a more ‘social’ Spotify

A new “Friends” tab and comments this week from CEO Daniel Ek point to Spotify becoming a much more social platform.

The ability for fans to share and communicate with other fans and for artists to communicate with fans from within the Spotify ecosystem would be a game-changer for artists.

Last month Spotify began testing a Friends tab at the bottom of its mobile app and if comments online are any indication, it’s a big hit.

While still in its early stages, images posted on Twitter show a Friends tab that includes a “weekly picks” section at the top and a feed of friends’ listening activity, much like you’d currently see in Spotify’s desktop experience.

This is not Spotify’s first foray into socials.

Last year Spotify tested a Community tab on its mobile app that offered a dedicated place to view what music friends were streaming and which playlists they’d updated.

Spotify Wrapped, which is built for social sharing, broke records last year with 156 million monthly active users engaging – up 30% year-over-year. Wrapped also drove the highest-grossing merch sales for artists to date and a 2.7x increase in visitors to artists’ tour pages.

Ek confirmed Spotify’s interest in getting more social on Tuesday’s Q4 earnings call. “Overall, we’re committed to creating the best audio experience for consumers and creators in the world, said the CEO, “and obviously, social could be a meaningful driver of creating an even stickier and more engaging experience.

When it comes to a more social Spotify, “sticky and engaging” for the streamer also means “sticky and engaging” for every artist on the platform.

Bruce Houghton is the Founder and Editor of Hypebot and MusicThinkTank, a Senior Advisor at Bandsintown, President of the Skyline Artists Agency, and a professor for the Berklee College Of Music.

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