The New Desktop App

dan
Roadie

UPDATE - April 16th, 2021

Hey folks,

 

We've tried to cover most of the frequently asked questions concerning the new update in this Spotify Answer - Make sure to check it out!

 

We'll continue to go through all your posts in this blog, so if you have any other questions besides the ones in the FAQ, feel free to add them in a comment below.

 

Thanks,

The Community Moderator Team

 

UPDATE - April 8th, 2021

Hi Everyone,

Yesterday we published a blog post on our engineering blog which goes into more details on the new UI, the reasons behind it and the process of building it.  If you'd like to read a few more details like that you can check it out here.

I'd also like to mention a few things coming in upcoming versions of Desktop

  • We're working on bringing back a list-like Discography view, something many of you have mentioned missing in the new UI.  We expect this to land in an upcoming release, so do watch this space and make sure you remain fully updated.
  • "Discovered On" playlists for artists will be back in an upcoming release.
  • We're working on bringing to Desktop the ability (like in our mobile apps) to see all the saved songs by a particular artist from within the artist page itself.  Again this will be arriving in an upcoming Desktop release.

Thanks,
Dan

 

ORIGINAL POST -----

 

Hi everyone

Dan here from the Desktop team again. I wanted to make another post to once again thank you all for your continued feedback, and also give a little more detail about what we’re doing from here on in.

 

In short, the new user interface is the future of the Spotify Desktop client, and over the coming weeks we’ll roll out the new UI to all Desktop users. Many of you will have noticed already, but we’ve based the new experience on the more modern and scalable Web Player codebase, and in doing so made both versions more aligned and easier to use than ever before.

Why are we making this change?

We believe in the future of the Desktop platform and want to make sure it can still serve the needs of our users now and into the future. 

The existing Desktop UI codebase became increasingly hard to maintain as time went on, and you may have noticed a growing gap between the Desktop and Mobile apps in some cases. For those of you interested in the technical details, a blog post on the engineering blog is coming soon. The short story, however, is that our desire to continue pushing Desktop forward and bringing new features to it became incompatible with the reality of maintaining the legacy experience.

 

Meanwhile, we had a Web Player serving similar user needs, but built in a much more modern and scalable way — with a more cohesive Spotify “look & feel”. We therefore resolved to use the Web Player UI code as the basis for both Web and Desktop in the future, and have been spending quite some bringing the Desktop-class features that you’ve come to expect to this shared platform. You’ve had a sneak peek of this as we’ve been testing and building things out, so once again I’d like to thank you for both being a part of it and giving great feedback on this thread that has definitely helped us improve.

Benefits of this approach

Firstly, I’d like to say that this really is a new beginning for the Desktop app. Long-term Desktop users will start to notice more rapid iteration on the app than they’ve seen in the past.

 

I’d like to call out some of the things in the new Desktop, and also give you a little taste of what’s to come.

 

Design - We’ve focused on consistency, are using more color to enhance the experience where appropriate, and are making better use of cover art and album images in the app. We're also better aligned to other platforms, put an increased focus on accessibility, interactions and animations, and have tightened up our design language, so it’s more in line with what users have come to expect from Spotify.

 

Functionality - We’ve brought the functionality that users expect from Desktop, like sorting/filtering, drag & drop, and advanced settings and options, whilst improving areas like playlist creation and curation, profile pages, and more. In many cases these improvements have landed in the Web Player, so the work here has benefited our combined users on both platforms.

Tip! You’ll also find new keyboard shortcuts for many tasks (press ctrl+? to see them) which makes certain actions much faster and easier for any user.

We are also aware that there are a few aspects raised in the community that haven't been fully addressed as part of this update, but items like the Search Bar and discography on artist pages have ultimately been brought closer in line with other Spotify applications. That said, we will continue to iterate on the experience across both platforms moving forward.

 

The future of Desktop

As mentioned above, this change to the Desktop UI gives us the ability to move faster in bringing you new improvements, features and functionality — so you can expect to see continued improvements to the client in the weeks and months to come.

 

Once again, I’d like to thank you all for helping us shape the Desktop App over the past year on behalf of everyone here at Spotify, and please do continue to post your feedback and use our Ideas section here in the Community to tell us what you’d like to see and why.


Thanks again,

Dan

1,433 Comments
MikeFourteen
Newbie

Oh my goodness this update is just awful. It's like they looked at the iPad version and tried to make it less user friendly. I see the discography track-list should be coming back but seriously, it should not have been released without it.

To wait so long for a meaningful update to the desktop version only to get this is just bizarre.

jockwhyte
Newbie

WHERE IS THE FRIEND ACTIVITY BAR ON THE NEW DESKTOP APP UI???? 

MikeFourteen
Newbie

Just have to add, who in their right mind thought that if two columns had to be combined (to save horizontal space presumably) that Artist would be the best one to depreciate? Surely Album would have been the less offensive option? Who sorts by Album in a random playlist? I guarantee you its less people than would sort by Artist.

I just read your technical blog update and as someone that has run teams of developers in the past this is as self-serving justification as I have ever seen. This is an entirely internally-driven project. While I understand the reasoning, any thoughts for what Desktop users might actually want are clearly ignored. Your "Evaluation Matrix" is tragically laughable - It should just be a pyramid as point 4 was demonstrably irrelevant in this update.

kranorzor
Visitor

Hello, the new UI is great I'm enjoying it, the only concern for me at least on a 4k monitor is that the new UI is very tiny compared to the old one, add an option to scale the interface, please.

 

Thanks 

kranorzor
Visitor

Sorry for double post but i can't edit the other one.

 

Please add the functionality to see the lyrics of songs on desktop app (windows)

 

Thanks!

the_9000
Music Fan

New UI: baffling, utterly baffling.

Markusz
Visitor

Please add a compact mode similar to what we had before.

Please make sorting by artist in a playlist easier like we had before (have it's own column, and not just under the sort menu)

EmoryRiverTroll
Visitor

Just logged in to add my name to the complaint list.  New update is horrible.  Why is Joe Rogan now a small vid or full screen?  Fair amount of wasted space on the left column...  Just not a fan of this update.

andrew-mackenzi
Newbie

@Dan Why would you even release it without the basic abilities/views like a list of liked songs of a particular artist? That's such an obvious/no-brainer ... who's the potato making these decisions?

epunc
Newbie

Please restore the ability to organize albums into folders, per this thread: https://community.spotify.com/t5/Desktop-Windows/New-Spotify-UI-can-t-add-album-to-a-Folder-and-drag...

 

A playlist, which is a list of tracks, can still be stored in a folder.

 

An album, which is also just a list of tracks, should also still be able to be stored in a folder.

 

Only being able to store an album by putting all its tracks into a playlist majorly screws up the organizational functionality of Spotify. Artists may as well not even create albums anymore, just one giant undifferentiated list of tracks.

CrunchTM
Visitor

I really miss the old media keys overlay. Since I only have one big playlist with 600 songs, it's hard to tell what song is playing whenever I skip, because some slowly grow louder, and I often skip over songs that I wanted to listen to. The notifications don't even work either, so I don't know why it was removed.

rafaelup21
Casual Listener

The new update brought improvements but brought the following problems:
- Allow repeated songs in playlists (without the warning that was given in the previous version)
- The songs and albums only have the year of release, different from the previous version that had the date in the format dd / mm / yyyy

Kazuma6666
Newbie

Well I'll just join the bandwagon. Not very happy with the new release, maybe it will get better with time. If I want to create a playlist with all the tracks from an artist (which seems necessary for every artist I listen to since I can't shuffle all tracks from an artist), I need to go into each album and add them separately. This is annoying. In the past I would see a "..." next to the album that would let me add the ablum to a playlist. I guess that's too complicated to see on a smartphone... 

 

Maybe with time we'll get new versions that add functionalities that are now missing. 

This seems to be a trend lately, as Microsoft did the same when replacing skype for business with Teams. Unfortunately for spotify, they are really now in the same position as Microsoft. Competition is fierce in the world of subscription music services. 

Kazuma6666
Newbie

Can't correct my typo in the previous post. Spotify are really not in the same position as Microsoft. 

Kazuma6666
Newbie

If you really have to get more space in your app, did you really think the artist was the best to move around? It's such a no brainer to put the album under the title, and the artist in it's own column.

 

Even so, it doesn't make any sense. On a desktop, the most used resolution is 1920*1080, 1080P. Do you think it's a big problem to show 5 columns on that?

 

The joy of having a common interface for 5 inch and 35 inch screens.

Caligari87
Casual Listener

Maybe someone has mentioned this already, but clicking the "Now Playing" thumbnail used to go to the current playlist/album/queue/radio and scroll to the currently playing track. Now the latter half of that is missing, it just goes to the top of the list, and doesn't scroll to the currently playing song. This makes things a little more difficult when shuffle-playing as you need to scroll through the whole list to find the highlighted now-playing track. 

bernleckie
Casual Listener

Please can we see the release dates for latest songs on the artist pages again? They were really useful to help me spot the latest and greatest things to tell others about!

pedrorafaneves
Visitor

Disappointing!

Taking out the Songs tab? What are you guys thinking over there? It shouldn't be even allowed such an idea. Listen to your customers.

Since I took the time to complain about this lousy UI I might as well register my rage against the changes you made on Discover Weekly. It used to show only new songs, which is what originally drove me to Spotify, now half of it is songs I already know. I guess it's Same Old Weekly.
Bring back the Songs tab and Discover Weekly (original algorithm)

Cheers

-Michael
Newbie

I had to login to say my piece.  I just got the new update and just wanted to say that the Artist page changes have ruined my Spotify experience.  I used to always go to a Artist's page and sample each of the their songs right from the page but now I have to click multiple times through each of their albums to get to each song.  In addition, I lost the ability to sort lists by artist which I do regularly.  If this doesn't get fixed soon I'll start looking for alternatives.

spokify
Regular

Hi Dan and the Spotify dev team. First thanks so much for a well-designed app! I really also appreciate you explaining everything in the opening post. I'm sure a lot of us were looking for context, and most of my questions have been answered there. Wish you all luck with the needed change you are making, and I look forward to even more features in the future.

Just a couple things I've noticed for me, concerning the functionality of playlist creation and maintenance:

* Copying works ok, but paste can now only pastes songs at the bottom of a playlist, and I can't seem to paste songs exactly where I'd like them. After pasting, I am able to drag songs luckily, but of course, this becomes a long drag (pun intended :-D) if you're playlist is lengthy

* Cutting doesn't work at all for me at the moment

Those are the only bugs I have noticed in my workflow.
---------------------------------

I do have one extra question though, and I understand if you don't have the time to answer this: in the old UI/UX, whenever I copied and pasted, the song order that I pasted would change if I sorted by 'date added' afterwards. Is it possible that in the future, that the song order can stay the same when we paste several songs at once, even if we sort by date added a later time? I do understand your need to squash all major bugs first, and then to tackle the largest requests first. Thanks for your time.

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