The New Desktop App

The New Desktop App

dan
Spotify
Spotify

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

1,998 Comments
Sebasty
Rock Star 18
Rock Star 18

"Why does the track have to play automatically after searching it??"

 

That bit me a bit. Fortunately it's only when you click on the Top Result, and when you're not already playing something. I do have a visceral dislike towards everything that initiates playback without my permission though, and that was unexpected.

Clicking on Song and Album results from now on, avoiding the Top Result...
(on old client it was only album art that'd trigger playback)

 

I also feel there should be something in-app that would address where the user should look to find something. Where in the app does it suggest to hit ctrl + / to get the list of keyboard shortcuts, other than the modal itself? Or which way to get the URI codes? That is very hidden.
Not forcing users to google their way around the app would be a step towards user-friendliness.

 

Not particularly ok with artist bio placement either - it feels kind of disrespectful for the artists. On the old client it's the compilations and artist playlists that are pushed down to the very end, but on the new ui, the artist's story loses its significance. I don't know.

 

Fix the cut-copy-paste keyboard commands. They are integral tools for managing playlists.

In terms of keyboard use in app, the very old client (0.9.xx and prior) was the most keyboard friendly. I could tab between navigation (left sidebar) and playlists, it would immediately highlight a song in playlist / a playlist in the left sidebar and I could scroll immediately and find something I want to listen to.
A keyboard command to queue the selection was sweet.

 

I am glad to see that when I go somewhere else from the end of my long playlist, I am still at the same position (end of playlist) when I return. The loss of that functionality made the client super hostile for use.

 

Seeing the tiled UI on my Ubuntu is quite a contrast, too. : )
Oh man Amazon... I should probably say I refuse to use the new UI until list view on artist pages is back. I really don't want to click my way through different albums, looking for a song I don't remember the exact title of.

Punky_John
Music Fan

Hi All, I am still having issues with the playlist not syncing between desktop and ios. It tends to be 1 or 2 songs that have the discrepancy and when they are "dragged" from the bottom of the playlist.

This is hugely annoying.

 

Thanks

AWOLtrooper
Regular

This app still blows.

 

Thanks for making it unusable.

Thanks for labeling "singles" as "albums"

Thanks for 15 follow buttons nested right next to each other

Thanks for millions of wasted pixels of space when you stretch the stupid ui to full screen

Thanks for not actually knowing what people want in a real app.

Thanks for doing the bare minimum.

Thanks for forcing my podcast downloads to duplicate into a stupid EPISODES PLAYLIST

Thanks for being tools who don't care about your own software

I hate this. I hate all of it- you guys BLOW.

 

On the bright side its good to see you guys letting mentally challenged people do all the UI/UX coding (THAT must be the reason why everything sucks, right, not that competent human beings actually made this and think its good? Because it's not).

 

I'm sure it saves you money.

 

Oh, and thank you for giving me an easy reason to cancel my subscription.

meadowcroftt
Gig Goer

I just had a disturbing experience in the new UI:

Bottom line up front:

a) cntl-v only inserts music at the end of the playlist, not the spot I selected

b) spotify deleted 100 of my songs - uncommanded by me

c) the left side of the UI greyed-out but still worked

 

Details of the experience: on an artist's page in the tracklist of an album, I selected all the tracks and typed cntl-c, thus copying the tracks to the clip board.  Then, I navigated to an existing playlist with 4000 songs in it.  I navigated to the middle of the playlist and clicked on the spot where I want to insert the songs.  (Like I've done a million times before in the old UI).  Then I typed cntl-v.  The songs did not appear in the middle of the playlist, but did appear at the end of the playlist.  I selected these songs appearing at the end of the playlist and right-clicked remove from playlist.  Then, I navigated to the middle of the playlist again to try again to insert them.  To my horror, 100 songs in the middle of the playlist had been deleted too.  I restored the 100 songs, song by song, all appearing at the bottom of the playlist and then dragged them back to the middle of the playlist.  I should add, during this search, select, add-to-playlist process, the entire left side of my UI turned grey.  But, I was able to continue anyway with the greyed out UI.  This took quite a while of dragging, since the dragging was over the range of 2000 other songs.  I completed the original objective and came over here to complain about my experience.  In short:

a) cntl-v only inserts music at the end of the playlist, not the spot I selected

b) spotify deleted 100 of my songs - uncommanded by me

c) the left side of the UI greyed-out but still worked

 

Kriisi
Newbie

So... Is it possible that the Spotify suits saw the flustercuck that was Facebook desktop browser redesign and immediately thought they must have some of that sweeeet dumbed down action too? 

gavin_davis
Casual Listener

Oh no, my Desktop app just updated to this and I despise almost everything about it.  I might just need some time to adjust, but there seems to be so many mis-steps that I'm sure that's going to be a struggle.

 

The navigation is appalling, I feel completely at sea.  Getting rid of list view and prioritising imagery in an effort to emulate iOS is a horrible idea.  If I want to listen to the latest single by an artist I now have to click on a thumbnail (which I accidentally scroll past all the time at the moment) and navigate into that singles page and play from there, but if I want to access other tracks by the artist, I now have to go back to the main artist page and navigate to each single or album individually, it's madness.  

 

You're also hiding the complete library by each artist, so you have to click 'SEE ALL' to see all of their music. Why would you hide an artist's discography on the artists page?  To rub salt into the wounds, you've prioritised Fans Also Like over that artist's complete discography, by pushing those thumbnails into the space where the complete discography could be sitting. 

 

Why on earth would you hide the search bar from me? It's completely pointless and makes finding music (one of your primary purposes) harder!

 

You've dropped the artist column in all playlists, so I can now no longer sort by artist! What possible reason could you have for that?  There's plenty of real estate to play with on the desktop app! I find it much harder to see and organise what's what because you've squished the names under the track titles. and again prioritised visual clutter.  This is Desktop, we don't need huge hit targets! 

 

You moved the like button onto the opposite side of the screen? I'm assuming this is mainly to accommodate these pointless thumbnails you're forcing on us.

 

This is a horrible horrible mis-step. I hope your UX/UI team look through all the comments here and give us Desktop users some love in the next design cycle.

AWOLtrooper
Regular

OH, don't forget,

 

Thanks for cluttering the title with the artists name, instead of just having a DIFFERENT COLUMN WITH THE ARTISTS NAME.

 

So now even my sort by artist is confusing. You really biffed this.

 

EVEN ZUNE CAN DO THAT.

 

Bit nah, this 700 pixels of empty space is soooooo worth it.

 

REAL TRENDY GUYZ.

 

*knock knock* is anyone listening???

AWOLtrooper
Regular

Did you guys export this UI job to Malaysia or something?

hellewic
Newbie

just saw your most recent FAQ post. you're seriously going to pretend like all of these hundreds of comments are just FAQs? silly us, we just don't realize that you can click the Title bar 3 times and then rearrange our playlist by Artist! no, we do realize, it's just an absolutely**bleep** design

 

i'm seriously so disappointed, been paying for spotify for 6 years and i normally don't care with small feature changes, i don't care if my top 100 songs aren't exactly my top 100, i get it, that must be tough to code.

 

but you've taken away extremely simple, clean designs and features in favor of what exactly? a prettier design? jesus this is so stupid

 

it cannot be that hard to code a separate artist column. if that's too hard for you guys i'm not sure how spotify has stuck around this long

hellewic
Newbie

genuinely hilarious that you posted an FAQ - "hey guys, we answered all of your questions :)" lol they aren't questions, they're complaints, and you didn't address a single one of them

baoutch
Casual Listener

This is like talking with some dude high on mdma...

 

Why was the Search bar moved?

This change was made as part of our efforts to improve accessibility and functionality

 

Can't stop laughing at this one...

CadeReynolds
Newbie

I mean, why not just add all of this, everything we want, as a simple option in settings? 

Everybody win this way, you get to keep showing this "amazing" UI to basic users who don't give a **bleep** AND we get a chance to get it back to useable state once again.

 

Something like:

"Show artist column: yes/no"

"Position of search bar: stupid /normal"

"Show/hide thumbnail for every f*@king track in every playlist: yes/no"

"Show made for you in main menu: yes/no"

etc.. you get the picture 😉

dantebarba
Regular

Hope you're not paying  six-figure salaries to the UX team for this. Pay them to me I can do a better job than this **bleep**. Rolled back and disabled automatic updates (which you don't let to do from your app).

dantebarba
Regular

Oh so you sensor words. I meant this c - r - a - p application.

ZbP
Newbie

Add. SPOILER 1) Closing the technical gap is one thing, breaking UX is another thing. If you’ve done it well, we might not even notice that app guts changed.

 

Add. SPOLIER 2) Seriously, you won’t stop rolling new version out while you are getting such a ‘nice’ feedback? This thread, reddit…

 

Add. SPOILER 3) Yes, Made for You section is well hidden. Really accessible now.

 

Add. SPOILER 4) Yes, also Discover Weekly is well hidden.

 

Add. SPOILER 5) Every desktop app these days has search bar at the top, when you ‘hide’ it to the side, you just create confusion. Also does not matter there is same number of clicks to reach the goal. It still feels you must click it again. And then when you click search, move focus to other window, go back, you need to return focus etc… Plain confusing, I really don’t understand, why search entry field has to be reserved just for a search tab, when there is nothing else at it’s place at other tabs.

 

Add. SPOILER 6 & 7) Yes, very unorthodox approach to sorting, I guess this will become standard in upcoming years. Especially at 1080p 24’+ screens.

 

Add. SPOILER 😎 Removing UX features like Discovered On for sure closes technical gaps.

 

Add. SPOILER 9) Who had the great idea to hide discography in the first place? Seriously, did that person ever used beautiful Spotify app at the desktop? And who was insane enough to agree with such a strategic move? Is there some kind of marketing move behind it? Or are you listening only two one album block buster pop stars?

 

Add. SPOILER 10) Once more, desktop != mobile, the top of the page turned into the abyss of nothingness, but yeah, I guess when we don’t have to scroll that much

because of SPOILER 9) it would be very logical to put BIO down.

 

Add. SPOLIER 11) You made Spotify URI very power user-ish

 

Add. SPOILER 12) Local files - won’t judge, haven’t been using this feature, mostly because of huge slow down during boot.

 

Add. SPOILER 13) Greyed out songs - I don’t care about this one.

 

Add. SPOILER 14) Liked songs, yeah, why not…

 

Add. SPOILER 15) Old UI will receiving updates and support. Fine with me, but SPOILER for you: FIX THE NEW ONE FIRST!

Bun-Bun
Music Fan

Vote this up so they change their stand on display desnity aka space between lines in playlists aka being able to fit more than 6 songs on the screen at the same time!

 

https://community.spotify.com/t5/Idea-Submissions/Desktop-Playlists-Add-density-slider-for-UI-displa...

 

Ogreb
Visitor

As many others have stated in this thread, this update has made some baffling changes that are actively hindering my ability to use and enjoy Spotify. The most egregious from my perspective are:

  • Removing the artist column and wedging the artist under each individual track name... WHY? It is now completely illogical, the titles and artist names are both harder to read, the album column is now the natural place for the eyes to look when looking for the artist name which leads to confusion, etc. Please restore the artist column, this is just a mess now.
  • Why is the search bar not available by default? It simply adds an extra click every time I want to search for something, which is... you know, the most frequent action I undertake on Spotify! Massive UI and UX misstep.
  • Why can I no longer scroll down to view an artists discography listed as tracks like was possible before? Having to search album by album for a track that I may not remember the name of is tedious, so many more clicks required.

I implore you to please restore the functionality and logical layout that was available before for desktop, lest I have to consider switching to an alternative music streaming service.

meadowcroftt
Gig Goer

Navigation in a playlist is broken.  If I use my left mouse button to click on a song and then hit the page down button on my keyboard, the playlist scrolls down about a page.  I can hit the page down button about 2 more times and it performs as expected.  But, on the 4th time that I hit page down, the page freezes and refuses to page down.  To fix this, I click again with my mouse button.  And repeat.  I get 3 page downs and then must click the mouse again.

pit1288
Music Fan

Hey! I've created a UI for Spotify to consider. If you like it, your vote is highly appreciated.

 

https://community.spotify.com/t5/Idea-Submissions/Desktop-UI-proposal-to-fulfill-user-s-needs-Mockup... 

 

Thanks!

17341057
Casual Listener

Hello. I've found another issue, again, with the new version of the desktop app. When landing on an artists page and looking at the Discography section, it says every release is an album. It looks like this is a sleepy blunder that has been forgotten to address in the process of making the app since it's such an obvious error. Can we fix this please? Also can we fix the countless other issues with this update like the search bar, the artist column, the cluttered overall look etc.
Not angry, just disappointed.

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