Spotify’s redesign simplifies navigation and highlights podcasts

Spotify is officially rolling out its redesigned experience which puts a greater emphasis on podcasts. The company today announced a new version of its “Your Library” section is being rolled out now to paying subscribers on its Premium plan. Its goal is to make it easier to move between Music and Podcasts and find the podcast shows and episodes you want to hear.

The company in May previewed this news with select press while the redesign was in testing.

With the update, users will be able to swipe or tap to switch between music and podcasts, while the latter also features three sections for podcast management: Episodes, Downloads, and Shows.

The Episodes tab lets you seek out new episodes or resume the podcasts you’re already listening to, picking up where you left off. As you scroll down, you’ll find other newly released episodes from the shows you follow. In other words, the experience prioritizes your in-progress episodes over a strict chronological order.

The Downloads tab is where you can manage the episodes you’ve saved for offline listening and the Shows tab is where you can manage the podcasts you follow and check out their prior episodes. The shows are ranked in this section by whichever ones have the newest episodes.

Meanwhile, the Music tab has been updated to make it easier to get to the content you want to access. Where before users were presented with a list (Playlists, Stations, Songs, Albums, etc.) to dive into, you’ll now be dropped directly into the Playlist section.

To get to the Artists or Albums, you swipe or tap to reach their section. To add an Artist, you still “follow” them as before, and albums you favorite (by tapping the heart) are saved to the Albums section. You can also save all an album’s songs to your “Liked Songs” playlist by tapping the three-dot more menu (…) then choosing “Like all songs.”

The redesign places far less emphasis on video content, an earlier focus for the streaming music provider. This year, Spotify has instead doubled down on podcasts, believing in its ability to shift radio advertising over to its app by offering better targeting.

It’s been selling its own ads on its original podcasts since mid-2018. However, paid subscriptions still account for the bulk of Spotify’s revenue today — €1,385 million versus just €126 million from advertising in Q1, and subscriptions are growing faster than advertising at 34% vs. 24%, respectively.

The company has been ramping up on podcasts across the board, with acquisitions in the market like  GimletParcast, and Anchor as well as investments in original programming and exclusives. Just yesterday, Spotify announced a new personalized playlist that combines music and podcasts, as well.

Beyond its podcast focus, Spotify’s redesigned app is much easier to navigate — addressing a concern that some have had with the overall experience. Spotify’s busy interface is often cited by those who opt for Apple Music as one of the reasons they prefer the competitor’s app. To some extent, this is personal preference. But arguably, Spotify has been overdue for an update given its shifting attention.

Spotify says the updated design is live today for Premium users.

 

 

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