Spotify today is officially unfolding its shared playlist feature called Blend for global users, with a few changes. Earlier this summer, Spotify had first released the new shared playlist experience in beta testing. The feature, which allows two people to combine their favorite songs into a shared playlist, uses the same music mixing technology used by other multi-person playlists such as Spotify. Family mix and Duo mix. However, Blend allows any Spotify user, including free users and paid subscribers, to merge their music tastes as well.
The feature has been further developed since its beta release, Spotify says.
Now users who create a Blend (aka their shared playlist) will get something called a “liking match score” that shows them how similar or different their listening preferences are, compared to their friends. After the mix is created for the first time, this flavor match score is displayed as a percentage and will be accompanied by text that tells users which song ties them together.
Blends will also feature a new cover art to help users find their playlists more easily.
Premium subscribers will also get an added benefit. In your version of a mix, listeners will be able to see which of the user’s preferences contributed to each song in the playlist.
Spotify says that during Blend testing, Olivia Rodrigo ranked # 1 as the most played artist on Blend playlists, followed by others like Doja Cat, Taylor Swift, The Weeknd, and Lil Nas X.
The feature isn’t just meant to be a fun addition to Spotify. It is also a user acquisition strategy. Since free users can create or join a mix, the feature can serve as a way to entice someone to join Spotify for the first time, even if they don’t currently pay for the music or subscribe to a rival service. . But once they’re in the Spotify app, they can decide to stick around, you think.
The mix was announced in June together a new app experience called Only You, which focuses on your favorite music and how you listen to it, sort of like a mid-year version of Spotify’s popular annual retrospective, Spotify Wrapped. Like Only You, Blend includes social sharing support. Users will be able to share Blend’s “data stories” through their social channels. This is the screen that appears immediately after a mix is created, but can also be accessed from any time within the mix playlist.
Spotify’s biggest message with features like this, which are released at a fairly constant cadence, is about conveying to users and competitors alike that it is further ahead when it comes to personalization technology. Although rivals now fool Spotify’s ideas for playlists, the company tends to have something new to release soon after, be it Only You or a playlist geared towards travelers, those from the gym, or a collection of new mixes based on artists, genres and decades.
You can access Blend from the Made for You hub on the Spotify mobile app. To get started, click “Create Mix” and then “Invite” to select a friend to join your mix. When the friend accepts, Spotify will create the cover, the song lists and show the score of your liking. You can then click “Share this story” to post your data story on your social networks.
Blend will begin rolling out to all users worldwide, starting today. Large-scale launches can take time, so you don’t see it right away, just check back later.