The New Desktop App

The New Desktop App


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.



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.





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,



seriously please undo the recent update. it is so counterintuitive and truthfully insulting. i want my playlists in a certain order, i know what i like. i am seriously considering switching music platforms even though i have used and loved spotify for years. some things don't need to change. bring back the 'made for you', 'recently played', 'albums', and 'podcast' tabs. seriously who decided this would be a good idea. you took away all the good parts of spotify. 

Rock Star 24
Rock Star 24

If you hover over the release date in the new 2021 desktop app update or the web player for several seconds, the full release date will show in a popup tooltip. They should just show the full release date by default. The tooltip is slow and small.


full release date hover tooltip.png


Similiar with other folks in here, I would like to raise my concern regarding to this new desktop apps update.

The first one is about the discography, the design team definitely ruin something that already work very well and serve its purpose. Now every time I search towards one artist , I have to select album or single. If I want to check the top 5 played, I also have to back again, what a bad user experience. I suggest to bring back the old UX, its way more intuitive. I already paid for premium, so I wish I can browse seamlessly.

The second one is search,  now I have to click search button, just leave search bar as before so I can search without need extra click.

The third one is lyric, this feature is definitely great. But it still need further improvement. Because sometimes the music don't match with the lyric timing. I also suggest lyric can also be downloaded once a song with lyric already downloaded for offline listening.

Music Fan

I don't like that I cannot delete more than one track from a playlist anymore, without being asked whether I really want to delete these tracks. Each single time. Always...


It's nice as a warning for inexperienced users but I think there is better ways to do this so it works for both - the occassional as well as the pro users.


For example, in the same dialogue let me tick something like "Don't show anymore" and the problem is solved right away.


Thanks 🙂

Casual Listener

The missing 'artist' column is really bugging me. It may be OK for the kids, but having the artist name under the track title only is hopelessly cumbersome. I've been a subscriber almost since Spotify began and this is a huge step backwards. Actually it makes me look for an alternative to Spotify.

Music Fan

With the new update (Win10), the local files playlist is one click further away (it is hiding in the "Your Library" tab).


Is there a way of pinning this playlist so it appears among the other playlists in the left pane?


A couple things that concern me:


-The search bar is gone, unless you want to click into a dedicated page for it, which is ridiculous. The search bar was taken away and replaced by...blank space.


-Everything just seems to big, like the font, playlist headings, etc.

Casual Listener



I posted the following in the support community and a Spotify staffer asked me to syndicate here; feedback on the desktop app update ✌️



Enjoying the interface upgrades in the desktop app, but it seems like a number of keyboard shortcuts are no longer working for me. According to [] they should still be mapped to their original key combinations, but nothing happens for me when I try them.


- macOS 11.3.1 (latest public release) on 2015 MBP

- Spotify (latest public release)

- Premium, family plan, UK



- cmd+[ and cmd+]  no longer navigate back + forth btwn views; the interface buttons do work when clicked w the mouse

- cmd+x no longer cuts tracks from a playlist; cmd+c and cmd+v do still work however

- hitting enter no longer triggers a primary button (the green one) in modal dialogues (e.g. 'do you wish to delete playlist? [cancel] [delete]


Anyone else experiencing this? Assume it's a glitch rather than been removed with the interface update...




The cut and paste functionality available in the old interface seems to be working now in the new interface.  However, when searching in a large playlist and then selecting/highlighting a track in the playlist search results, the new interface still doesn't keep the user positioned at the highlighted track when the search results are cleared, which can be a pain when organizing large playlists.  I've found a workaround, which is to play, then pause the track selected from the intra-playlist search.  Clear the search results.  Then, click the album art at the bottom left which takes the user to the track in the playlist.  Not elegant, but works for now.


Casual Listener

Incomplete Album list on Artist's dedicated Album Page.


This appears to be a bug:


From an Artist page I click on the Albums link above the partial list of albums to get to what I assume must be the complete Albums page (though God knows why they didn't leave them all on the front page).


However the Albums page itself doesn't appear to have the full list of albums either - I genuinely thought Spotify had removed a ton of content.


The fix? Click on the LIST View (which is horrible, why do I want to scroll through every track listing to find the album I want) and then click the COVER View AGAIN.


This time all the missing albums appear! So, to recap, going to the Artists Album page DOESN'T SHOW ALL THE ALBUMS until I've refreshed it twice using List view and back to Cover view.


I tried contacting support and was told they would inform the 'Concern Team'. I literally have no idea what a Concern Team is but have no confidence it involves fixing broken code. FYI, I uninstalled and reinstalled the app and tried it in an incognito browser window with the same results. The 2 artists I last checked and found it to be broken with were Yes and Rush.


Good grief.

Casual Listener

And FYI, I HATE the new app. It does literally NOTHING better and many things worse. Why did you bother?


Hey guys, how do I install the old version of spotify? I paid for premium and I want a functional desktop app, not some stupid **bleep**ing mobile clone. Have you guys not learned anything from the failure of Windows 8?


Please see what I wrote here about how difficult the new interface is to use:


I am not asking you to revert to the old one--I get it, progress is inevitable. But please, please bring back the features that made Spotify worth using. I am glad to see that the new Desktop app is a work in progress, which implies that some of these issues will be addressed.


Unfortunately, though, you seem to be insisting on the fact that the new version is more user-friendly, which is patently false. I am really struggling to get it to do what I used to be able to do easily. We have lost access to several crucial functions.


For me, the biggest issues are the fact that it is so difficult to click through to a specific song, and that it is no longer possible to easily add tracks to a playlist without having to scroll through the entire list thereof--basically, it is harder to find things, and requires more concentration and dexterity (which some of us don't have a ton of). The hidden search bar is also a substantial inconvenience (yeah, I get that you want coherence, but convenience is another great word starting in co).


I understand the need to update the codebase--fair enough. But, as it stands, it has decreased functionality and accessibility. Also, ctrl+? for shortcuts only works if you use a keyboard format that doesn't require one to use the shift key to get to the question mark.


I'll give it a bit of time, but I'll admit I am seriously considering cancelling my subscription if it remains this difficult to use the (really pretty basic) features I have come to expect. I do appreciate the work you folks put into this, but I turn to Spotify to relax and enjoy myself--not to find myself frustrated.

Not applicable

Hello everyone. I have received new UI update a few days ago and since then I tried using it. That's right, I tried. This whole new update is just a complete disaster. And I'm not getting emotional about it - that's the painful truth. Seriously guys, this is one of the worst desktop UI design ever in software development history. I'm also a software developer and while my team is trying to deliver customers the most intuitive and responsive UI, Spotify team is doing the exact opposite. What's wrong with the new UI? Well, plenty of things:


1. Removing YOUR LIBRARY section from left sidebar was a really bad idea. Now it takes more clicks to access our stuff.


2. New Your Library design is ugly and unintuitive - everything is too big and feels like put in wrong place.


3. Placing artist name under song's title is a bad joke. Separating those columns is the only right way to design a music player. Who even thought about merging these columns?


4. Moving heart icon to the right is just another bad decision. Who asked for this?


5. Why did you remove "thumb up" column? It was a great way to find out what songs from particular release people like the most. Bad design decision, one after another...


6. New UI is too dark. Previous UI colors were perfectly fine. Numerous studies have proven a long time ago, that too dark (and too bright) colors are bad for eyes. New UI hurts my eyes.


7. There's no Recently played section anymore. Why? It's another basic feature. I know we can find recently played tracks in the queue menu but it was there before and it's not the same thing.


8. New grid view shows less information. In previous UI covers (for example on Home page) were bigger and the whole album title and artist name (or playlist name and description) was shown. Now everything is almost always cut off. That useless frame around covers takes too much space. It looks really bad and I have to click on the album/playlist to see more info.


9. Top section on the release/playlist view is too big. I'm talking about top bar with cover art and description on album/playlist page.


10. Artist page in now a complete mess. The previous one was perfect. Now I can't see all releases on one page and have to scroll down to find out more information about the artist. There's literally nothing good in the new artist page design.


11. Artist photos are limited to 10. Why? Even mobile version doesn't have this strange limitation.


12. Removed search bar from the top. Seriously? This new UI is starting to be a meme.


13. Search section is a mess too. It's difficult to find something there.


14. Why Create Playlist button creates new playlist immediately? Old UI has this pop-up where we can put playlist name and description before actually creating a new playlist. Way more user friendly.


15. There's a lot of blank spaces. New grid design, top section on release/playlist page and the lack of artist name column cause this.


16. Everything is way too big. I don't know about you, Spotify team, but I'm not using my knee to navigate through the app. It's supposed to be a desktop application, not an enlarged mobile app.


17. New full screen looks bad and artist photos in the background are pixelated. Previous one was better. We could take a closer look at the cover art - some of them are really unique and it's nice to see them on the full screen.


18. Accessing Spotify URI is another sad joke. Why can't you just put it in the Share menu?


19. Generally new UI is way slower and unresponsive. Everything takes a lot longer to load and scrolling through long playlists is a nightmare - songs' titles and covers are taking ages to show up.


To be honest, the only good thing about new UI is that little tooltip showing the exact release date. Not much, huh?


Right now I was able to force old UI to load by adding ui.experience_override="classic" to prefs file. But if you won't bring back old UI to development  and leave this whole mess behind, I'm moving my family plan from my Spotify main account somewhere else. Simple as that.


By the way Recently played section on home screen is still not updatingShortcuts section shows things I've listened only once and long time ago (this section is also not updating). And still there's no way to remove playlists completely from account. Playlists can be restored using web panel (Recover playlists page) but cannot be permanently removed. What a farce...


Where's the place to comment on how terrible the new UI is and how thoroughly done you are with Spotify ruining the desktop app?  The frustration comes because this company has actively chosen to ruin what I had once thought was the best music streaming service and desktop app.  I'm so disappointed and frustrated.  The upside is that ever since I joined Spotify and got the premium subscription, I haven't bothered to look at any of Spotify's competitors - I was thoroughly happy with what I had.  Now that the Spotify folks have managed to ruin the app I liked, I am incredibly motivated to check out the completion and see what there is out there.  If I find something I like better, I'll have Spotify to thank for creating the impetus I needed to find something that is a better fit.  Whatever engineering problems "necessitated" changes to the desktop app, at the end of the day, this user has found the new Spotify update to be a worse experience than it was prior to the change.  Making it worse isn't an improvement I find useful or worth $10/month anymore.   


The major thing I've noticed with this update is that everything in your desktop UI now lags like **bleep**.

I'm guessing some goofball ported a bunch of JS code running in some crappy chromium container to also be the desktop app? Well, it runs**bleep**. I guess whoever runs your engineering team didn't think that having a responsive desktop application in 2021 was important, even though it's pretty much been a solved problem for two decades? Thanks for reminding me that one of the benefits of not using a subscription service is that I have control over whether or not I have to take updates.

Casual Listener

Dear Spotify


Why can't I remove the Connect With Friends panel with its Connect With Facebook button on the right of the app?


Maybe I can, but its not obvious and I've lost count of the times I've closed the whole app thinking the x above it would just remove the 'social panel'.


It's a huge waste of space and I want to listen to and efficiently browse music NOT go on Facebook.


You are providing a platform primarily to listen to music not socialise. If I wanted to do that I'd open Facebook or Twitter instead. I don't mind having some sharing functionality built in, but not at the expense of the main functionality of the app.


Maybe take a look at Roon or one of the other serious players and dedicate yourself to providing the best MUSIC PLATFORM instead tinkering around the edges with updates no one asked for, which degrade the usability and can't have been done in the name of improving the user's music listening and browsing experience.



Casual Listener

Support and reporting issues from the app.


I don't seem to be able to find a way to contact Spotify within the app, you know, to receive some support for the product that I'm PAYING FOR every month. It took me some considerable time to report the incomplete album list issue above, after hunting around many website links.


I swear you've even removed the 'Report a problem with this song' from the contextual menu... why? How do you expect us to let you know there's a problems? Because there ARE problems, I've reported them myself in the past

Casual Listener

1500 comments and no evidence Spotify is really listening.


I'll say one word... Emusic.


This is what happens to a music platform that loses sight of its primary purpose, coupled with a complete redesign of a once decent interface that everyone liked, resulting in poor performance, loss of core functionality and general unusability. It was the beginning of the end followed by the loss of large amounts of content.


I was a loyal customer for over 10 years but left as a result. It's taken less than 1 year for Spotify to pull this stunt.


Spotify needs to decide if it's a serious music platform for its paying customers or a lightweight internet radio station and social hub for people who neither care nor are prepared to pay for it. If its the latter, I'm off.


I totally agreed with you, it might be the beginning of the end. So many
happenings with Spotify in the recent months, from what happened in last
March with the Kakao M rights dispute that locked away 60% of K-pop for
almost two weeks, and now I can see that this UI destruction can be the
beginning of something as well. If Spotify don't want to see that
catastrophic stuffs again, they need to give customers an option.