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

1,537 Comments
WinCPP
Visitor

This may have already been reported. But the "share" menu no more shows Twitter, Facebook, etc. Tried everything on the internet but it simply doesn't work. I unuinstalled the Windows "App" and downloaded the installer-based Spotify from the website. The "share" menu again displayed twitter, etc. The re-installed Spotify software was automatically upgraded to the Windows app store-based app and the functionality was lost again. Is this some known issue that we cannot directly share via the "share" menu to FB, Twitter, etc? Instead, it shows "COPY URL" and some other option.

pnr8555
Regular

Did well with the workaround.

 

As I said a couple of posts before, Spotify only cares about Drake and these type of things. If we can get that Scorpion campaign undone within days, we need to get things done now with enough support from more of these frustrated users.

pnr8555
Regular

Also, did anyone experience this... Sometimes when scrolling through album library, the app gets lagged up and eventually "crashed" to home landing. This might not be as annoying, but this should add one to the list of issues this "unified UI" has done the PC power-users and long-term users so far.

Mamar
Casual Listener

This thing is so frustrating now. A **bleep** nightmare !!!!

Mamar
Casual Listener

It looks like Spotify has lost the rights to make many tracks available from compilations, soundtracks, simple albums... Meaning that when these tracks are in your playlists and you have lots of them, you have blank/transparent tracks everywhere. Deeply annoying. Plus moving tracks around is a nightmare. This update is criminal.

charlieforde1
Regular
thats why i went to another company.i was a premium user for 7 yrs. didnt
much matter to them.now it dont much matter to me what they do or dont do.
im extremely happy where im at
thisisyourmom
Visitor

I wish I could customize what I see on the left sidebar on the desktop app... I almost exclusively use the saved albums, and making me have to go to "your library" and then over to "albums" is kind of annoying. I much preferred it when my albums were easier to access on the left sidebar. 

datsunlaurel
Regular

Here's a pretty easy way to roll back. Though they'll probably disable it soon.

 

Thanks, I tried to follow it, but I don't have a Spotify folder in the Roaming folder (hidden files are displayed, otherwise I wouldn't have been able to get to the Roaming folder).

jacobt28
Visitor

Love the new update and I was happy to see the design language become more coherent across platforms!

 

Just one hang-up for me though; the back/forward shortcuts on my mouse no longer trigger the app to seek back or forward. I hope it's an easy fix for one of us.

In case you need it I'm using:

The old (first gen maybe?) Logitech G502 Hero and Spotify for Windows 10 on a 2017 Razer Blade Pro '17.

justheretogripe
Visitor

Y'all I found the problem! From the original post:


Long-term Desktop users will start to notice more rapid iteration on the app than they’ve seen in the past.

It's beyond me why software engineers continue to believe that "rapid iteration" is anything desirable. Stable, long-term, unchanging software experiences is all any of us really wants out of any product. New features are rarely of interest to existing users, but you can be sure that removing existing features will be a jarring and unpleasant experience all around. I totally understand needing to update a legacy codebase--but that's a backend thing that the user should never even notice. Please put back what used to work and is familiar, and please try to be a bit self-aware and do everything in your power to prevent any urge a developer might have


to move faster in bringing you new improvements, features and functionality


We don't want you to move faster, we want you to stop moving as much as possible.

rhfb
Visitor

Really glad I was able to tweak that settings file to get the old UI back. The "new" UI is dreadful and nowhere close to ready.

 

When that gets patched/removed I can just unsubscribe and find a different service to use.

ninoaleman
Casual Listener

This release wasn't even remotely ready for production. I fully empathize with the challenges that come with a complete rewrite of an application, but you should have spent a few more weeks in UX testing and gathering community feedback before rolling it out. As a customer I could not care less as to why you feel that you needed to rewrite the application, but I certainly care about usability and not having familiar and often-used features taken away.

 

For the love of all your loyal customers, please do a post-mortem on this rollout and take a very, very honest look at your UX design processes.

ZachWoodyard
Newbie

Of course I'm all for improved design and functionality, but this update sacrifices so much in terms of functionality and navigation. I use the desktop app very often for finding new/related artists and songs and for journeying down rabbit holes to make fun, new discoveries. This update significantly hinders my experience. Here are just a few ways the update has worsened functionality and navigation:

- Search bar is not in an intuitive place and no longer keeps what you've typed into it once you made a search and clicked on a result—I have to retype everything again if I'm searching for something with same words/names.

 

- The results when I do a search are all way too big. I have to scroll and scroll to see all the information I want (songs, albums, playlists), whereas before, it was all visible with a quick glance.

 

- Popularity bar is gone. This was extremely helpful to have when I was searching through many songs with the same name.


- In an album or playlist, the artist names are harder to see and no longer highlight-able/copiable. This is frustrating when I want to copy an artist's name that is in another language since I cannot type it (like Mandarin or literally anything non-English.) In other words, if I find a song I like in Spotify and the artist/track/album are all in—let's say—Chinese, I have no way of searching for this artist elsewhere or doing any research on them, unless I learn how to type Chinese. 

- I have to scroll way down an artists page to get to the "About" page and to see the "fans also like." They used to be so quickly accessible. Having the 'similar artists' column next to the artist's top tracks, was such an easy and intuitive place for them, and made exploring new music SO MUCH easier. Now, the "fans also like" is buried among a ton of other things; I keep accidentally scrolling past it in the mess of "Discography," "Featuring," "Artists playlists," and "Discovered on."

 

- When I click to view all of an artist's albums, I am brought to a new page instead of simply having the albums instantly appear below on the same page (like before). This has two drawbacks: 1) load time is slower, and 2) when I click back to return to the artist's page, I am brought all the way back to the top instead of put back where I was, already scrolled down a ways. Not to mention the load time for going back is also slower.

 

- The thumbnails of users' playlists cuts off much more of the title of the playlist making it harder to see if it's what I'm interested in. I have to click on the playlist (which again takes longer to load than it used to) in order to see the full title. This of course, happened in the previous version, but the newer version cuts off more, because the thumbnail design was worsened/made smaller.

 

- I cannot customize the size of the friends activity column on the right like before. I can only have it or remove it completely.

 

These are just a few problems. I know these may seem like small issues to many, but they are extremely frustrating to someone who used to love using the desktop app for making new discoveries and quickly traveling through genres and time periods and discographies. These new updates greatly slow down and frustrate that process and make me less inclined to use Spotify for my music explorations. This was meant to be an UPDATE, not a downgrade. Unfortunately, Spotify has chosen to sacrifice utility and user enjoyment for some kind of 'design' that a few 'experts' apparently claimed was good or something. Please consider my complaints and create a UI that your everyday users prefer, not whatever this is.

ZachWoodyard
Newbie

Not sure why Spotify thought it was a good idea to make the desktop app so much like the phone app in terms of design and layout. The phone experience is VASTLY different than the desktop experience, and, therefore, design should reflect that. Take for example, scrolling. Scrolling is endemic to phones. It's a necessary evil, because of the limitations of screen size and finger/thumb movement. It is actually preferable on phones. On desktop, however, you want to avoid the need for scrolling since, well, it's not necessary. Because of the large screen and mouse capabilities, users should be able instantly access what they are looking for without needing to scroll. Scrolling works on phones, because items are easy to see, since they are contained in a smaller space. However, on the large, desktop screen, the eye has to move around across a massive space over and over, to find what it's after. Unfortunately, the latest update has taken none of this into account and has greatly increased the amount of scrolling need to access information. And that's just one example of how the new design has worsened user experience.

ninoaleman
Casual Listener

You can revert to the previous UI (and UX) with a manual file edit: Google for reverting_to_the_classic_desktop_ui and open the first hit (Reddit).

 

Naturally, I expect that it's only a matter of time until this doesn't work anymore, but my hope is that Spotify irons out at least some of the issues before this stops working.

markdem
Casual Listener

Hey Spti, (I improved your name by removing parts I felt where not needed based on user feedback) .

Now, I know I am not a "manager" or have a MBA or nothing like that, but here is something you might have forgotten about.

You are not a content creator, you are not the only streaming service, you don't have any meaningful exclusive content. Microsoft\Sony can pull this kind of **bleep** with there users, nexflix can pull it to because users there have no options. You, on the other hand, cant just pull a heap of useful features and **bleep** on how these changes somehow made the UX better. In your next meeting, ask yourself what is keeping me on your service.. The answer is nothing at all. I would not care less if I use you, apple, amazon, youtube or the may other music streaming services because there is no difference.

You above everything else are a app publisher. If your app is **bleep**, which now it is, users will leave. If you don't care about your users, which you have shown you don't, users will leave. If you think you are too big to fail, you are wrong..(See mySpace).

I know you don't care about what I or anyone else in this thread says, but at least I feel better.

 

Thanks for the update, I hate it.

 

agareth
Newbie

When will desktop app stop**bleep**?

charlieforde1
Regular
i already went elsewhere because like you said spot doesnt care.if
everybody left they would be forced to acknowledge us just like they forced
this unusable "upgrade" on us.now that i know how much better some of the
other streaming services i wouldnt go back if they give it to me for
nothing.if im going to have to pay at least it could be something i can use
charlieforde1
Regular
when you start using another service. if your seeing this spotify the key
would is SERVICE
nimareq
Gig Goer

The album name is now missing in the author's Popular tracklist.

 

nimareq_1-1618584876309.png

 

Please upvote a Feature request

https://community.spotify.com/t5/Idea-Submissions/Desktop-Browse-Display-album-name-in-artist-s-Popu...

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