Spotify’s Tastebuds feature will show you what friends are listening to

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Spotify Premium update October 2018
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Photo: Spotify

Spotify is gearing up to add a new social feature to its apps that could give it another edge over Apple Music.

Prototype screenshots of an upcoming feature called “Tastebuds” were unearthed on Twitter this week. From the looks of it, Tastebuds will build off Spotify’s underlaying social networking features, giving users a new way to discover music through what their friends are listening to.

Spotify has always had a much stronger social component than Apple Music, but for various reasons, the music service hasn’t used it to its full advantage. You can follow friends and collaborate on playlists, but there’s not a way to listen to tunes together. Right now, the only way to see what your friends are currently listening to is from the hidden Friends Activity tab on the Mac app. That’s all about to change though.

Tastebuds on the way

Tastebuds
An early glimpse of what the Tastebuds UI looks like.
Photo: Cult of Mac

Jane Manchun Wong, who has a knack for discovering unreleased features in popular apps, found evidence of the upcoming Tastebuds feature in Spotify’s web app. From the Tastebuds section, you can search for people you follow. From their page, you can see what they’ve been playing most, listen along and add their music to your library.

It should be noted that just because Spotify is obviously testing the feature, doesn’t mean it will make its way to the public anytime soon or at all. Earlier this year, Wong found an unreleased Social Listening feature on Spotify that still hasn’t come out.

Tastebuds could be a great way for Spotify to keep its paid subscribers from fleeing to Apple Music. I personally haven’t jumped ship to Apple Music because all my friends are using Spotify and we share playlists with each other and on Instagram. Having a way to see a bigger picture of your friends’ music tastes would give users better music discovery tools beyond Spotify’s own playlists. Considering Apple’s horrible history track record at social media, I’d much rather tie my boat to Spotify.