If you haven’t already heard about the new Facebook ‘Timeline’ coming soon, then you should check it out, it’s more than just the usual tweak that they do quite regularily. The new layout has a refreshing new design with a new focus towards sharing media such as Movies, TV, Books and Music.
With it comes the latest version of the developer API called Open Graph, which allows developers to add new “verbs” into their Apps. These can be used to show your friends what you’re doing within these apps, allowing you to interact with the same media as your friends. So before you know it you will be watching, reading and listening all from Facebook homepage, making it ever more likely that Facebook will consume more and more of your time on the web.
Anyone who uses Facebook regularly, might have noticed the little green circle appear in their real-time feed. This green circle is Spotify which has now been fully integrated with Facebook. This means you can discover what songs your friends are listening to at the very moment they are listening to them, then just click on the link and listen to it yourself.
Spotify has always provided a good service and is a renowned brand, but I feel with this new partnership, Facebook may consume Spotify and it will just become a Facebook music service that just runs on Spotify invisibly in the background. On the other hand this may have just been a very wise move for Spotify, as latest reports suggest they have gained over one million new users since the integration was introduced less than a month ago. So they may have taken a back seat in terms of branding but potentially set to gain considerably with a wider user base gaining from Facebook more than 800 million users.
Aside from the Facebook integration it seems that Spotify have changed how new users signup, as we found out ourselves that to register for a new Spotify account, you must now have a Facebook account first. This requirement is a bold move from Spotify and might anger some fans that don’t have Facebook accounts and don’t wish to, as it’s required even if you just wish to use the standard Spotify client application. Having recently upgraded ourselves we didn’t like having to create another account on Facebook that we wouldn’t be using.
Obviously a large majority of people are already on Facebook and this simplicity may be very welcome, but we do feel that Spotify shouldn’t be forcing users to sign up to another service which is renowned for it’s privacy issues, but instead this should have been an optional extension to their existing service.
Don’t get us wrong, we love Spotify as it’s a great service and we’ve been using it ever since we moved into our new office. The free music is a good lure, who can resist it? Spotify have been very clever, as your casual user might be content with the feature ads in the free services, but listen long enough and the ads will drive you to insanity. You will get sucked into paying for the ad-free services, but we can definitely say it’s worth it. We can now listen to our guilty pleasures in peace without a single Meerkat selling us car insurance, or the incessantly annoying ‘You Know you Wanna’ every couple of songs.
On one final note to end on, for those who may be a little embarrassed about their songs you listen to, or just simply don’t wish to share them with everyone in your friends list, fear not as you can opt out of the sharing feature so it will not broadcast that your listening to something you wouldn’t normally admit to in public.