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TechCrunch Minute: Spotify rolls out an AI-powered playlist feature

Date 10 Apr, 2024

Writen by Alex Wilhelm

Position Senior Reporter

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Spotify is building on its AI DJ feature, adding a new AI-powered playlist feature. No, this is not merely asking Spotify to spit out, say, metalcore classics from the 2010s, but instead something more of a “my dog is sad and I love the color purple please make me a list of songs sort of thing. You can prompt it, and Spotify will come up with a list of tunes for you. How far you can push it remains to be seen, but I do intend to test its guardrails when I get the chance.

Spotify’s AI work nests into its other efforts to differentiate its service from rivals like Apple Music and offerings from Amazon. The European tech giant has also pushed into audiobooks, podcasting and even edtech in recent years.

Starting in just a few countries, the new AI playlist feature will roll out to more markets over time. How long it will take to reach your hands is not clear, if you, like myself, are not located in the feature’s launch countries. Some Spotify users have complained that the rollout of new products can take longer than they want to reach their home market, it’s worth noting.

The AI wave crashing into the world of music has yet to make artistry obsolete, but it does appear to be working toward finding a place in how we discover and consume art itself. Perhaps that’s a good working compromise.

By now you may be a little tired of hearing about AI all day, every day. Not that there’s anything wrong with AI news per se; lots of tech companies are working hard to infuse new AI tech into their products and services. It’s a big business story at a minimum. Then there’s the consumer angle, where AI comes closer to our daily lives. But for those of us who aren’t mega-ChatGPT users, AI can seem ever so slightly remote from our regular existence. Tools like Spotify’s latest can bring AI more into how we do our regular, mundane tasks like queueing up new tunes. Or not-so-new tunes, at least according to some users who view Spotify’s playlist work as part of a recurring effort to promote the same songs time and again.

Hit play, let’s have some fun!

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