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Spotify’s new platform to include video and podcasts

Spotify announced today a new platform that will expand its music offering to include video, podcasts and interactive features. New video offerings will include clips from partners like Comedy Central, VICE News and The Nerdist, and the company displayed podcast playlists from American Public Media and BBC.

Spotify CEO Daniel Ek also highlighted the company’s new activity-based playlists, curated to fit certain points in the day like waking up or a morning commute. The “morning commute” playlist that Spotify displayed included episodes from podcasts 99% Invisible and PRI’s The World.

People are searching less now for genre-based music and more for media that provides a soundtrack to their daily life, Ek told the audience at the event. “People don’t search for hip hop or country anymore, but rather they search around activities or a particular experience,” he said.

Several other new features mark Spotify’s move into interactive curation. One new feature will detect a runner’s speed and play music to that same tempo, selecting songs based on the person’s listening history. And six new tracks, which Spotify created specifically for this feature, will interact with the listener by matching their pace as it changes throughout a run, according to Spotify Chief Product Officer Gustav Söderström.

The new additions mark the latest chapter of competition between music streaming services for listeners. Spotify’s announcement came one day after its rival Deezer unveiled a new podcast offering to its music streaming service. Spotify’s new playlists bring the company’s business closer to Songza, whose hyper-curated playlists provide a soundtrack for activities as specific as “A Moonlight Swim in Canada.” Last year, Google acquired Songza, which is now valued at over $8 billion.

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