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[All Platforms] Option to have a true shuffle

So I’ve been noticing more and more recently that Spotify’s default shuffle feature doesn’t fully shuffle your songs. It does some sort of grouping to try to get similar songs together based off of what I’m sure is dozens of factors. Every time I shuffle a playlist (the one I noticed this with the most is ~100 songs and 6 hours of mostly full albums) it will group the songs mostly or completely together by album/artist, and given the number of times I’ve re-shuffled and checked the order there’s no way it’s just a coincidence. They also generally seem to be in the same order as well. If I hit shuffle play on a playlist it’ll generally put the same artists at the beginning every time.


With larger playlists of albums I am really not a fan of this shuffling method. If I have 6 hours of music on a playlist I will hardly ever have 6 hours to actually listen through the whole thing, but when I do listen to it I would like to hear all of the music on it equally, and not just the artist or two your algorithm likes to shuffle to first.


Anyways, I’m a reasonable man, all I’m asking for is an option to have a true shuffle (take all songs in the list, put them in a random order, and once they’re all played reshuffle them and play them again). Make it premium only if you want. I don’t think you should scrap the current shuffle algorithm because it sucks. Looking at some of the suggestions on here it seems like some people lobbied hard to have it that way. Just add an option for a true shuffle for those of us that don’t care about potentially getting the same song twice in a row.

Updated on 2021-09-14

Hey everyone,


Thanks for your votes and for bringing us your feedback in the Spotify Idea Exchange.


As this idea has gathered a fair amount of votes, we've discussed it with the relevant team once again. We actually want to take a closer look at what you're experiencing and get some of you in touch with our devs.


@jonathanleyerle- since you initiated the thread it would be great if we can have you on board.

@j4m1eb, @PrestonSale@decker12@jules99- what you mention is particularly interesting, so we'd like to have you on board as well.


We'll send you more info via Community PM, so please make sure they're enabled in your Community settings.


If anyone else is interested in participating, please let us know in this thread. We'll reach out to you, should we need more folks.




I haven't noticed a shuffle change on iOS yet. If anything, I had a worse experience related to shuffle play. Over the weekend I put on my 500+ song "Summer 2021" playlist which I created in May. Then I had this annoying behvaior:


  • About 7 days ago I added another 20 songs to this 500+ song playlist.
  • I haven't listened to this updated playlist until over the weekend.
  • When I started this playlist on Shuffle play, in the 45 minutes I was listening, it played 9 of those 20 new songs
  • Three of those 9 songs were from the same artist and played during those 45 minutes.

Statistically that seems pretty unlikely, which tells me Spotify is still messing with my shuffle play.


Hi Spotify, yeah we really need an actually random shuffle feature. 


It'd take a couple developers less than a week. 


I want my playlists to use an actual random number generator to genuinely play anything in the playlist. As is I just hear the same 20 songs every time I turn on shuffle 


Hey folks,


Thanks for your willingness to participate and for the feedback you provided.


We appreciate everyone that volunteered, but for now we want to focus on collecting more info from specific users, based on what they've shared so far.


In connection with the this, thanks @decker12 for your cooperation so far! Your responses have been taken into account and will be considered in the ongoing investigation.


@jonathanleyerle we reached out to you via PM a while back, but never heard back from you. We're going to resend our message again, in case it got lost somewhere along the way 🙂 We'd really appreciate it if you follow the instructions there.


@j4m1eb , @PrestonSale , @jules99 unfortunately we couldn't get in touch with you, because your Community profiles have private messages disabled. To enable them and read our message, just click on the envelope icon, marked with an exclamation, as shown in this screenshot:













Thanks in advance for your replies! 


Thanks for the reminder Mihail. I must have missed it somehow. I got the PM this time and filled out the form.

The shuffle needs to be fixed. Options to play the least heard songs in a
playlist are not difficult to implement. Spotify is riding the wave and
not listening to their customers. I am a paying subscriber who is feeling
ignored and about to cancel.

I'd be fine with a non-random shuffle if the algorithm could be fixed up somewhat to deal with the two problems I most frequently deal with.
1. The current algorithm favors some songs/artists over others, so I hear some songs really frequently and start getting sick of them, while not hearing other songs I put in the playlist. What if the algorithm added some selection weight to songs you hadn't heard as recently?

2. The algorithm also clumps songs by artists, so if I have lots of songs by a single artist in a playlist, I'll get them all grouped together. I'm not sure what the algorithm uses to determine what order to play songs in, but I wonder if it'd be better if it didn't consider the specific artists?


Mihail, I have enabled private messaging finally! But I don't see a message in there...though I am watching the various comments continuing to post here. I assume I'll hear something at whatever point something is happening or a solution has been found that can be defined so that I know what to expect when I choose SHUFFLE! Thanks again for your response and including me in the solution process. I really hope this issue is going to be addressed finally and comprehensively. By that I mean this:  even if random shuffle falls short of playing EVERY SONG before it begins to repeat some songs that the algorithm chooses randomly to repeat. Then, to add insult to injury, those songs repeat more than once in the same listening session!   At the very least it should not be so very easily noticeable that some songs are repeating within the same listening session. It's extra noticeable because those same songs I will find repeating in subsequent SHUFFLE listening sessions of the same playlist too.  Some songs I add to playlists NOT because they are my favorite songs, but because they are important for the completion of a playlist that I want to be representative of the genre or artist(s) in the playlist. Making matters worse is the songs that I've never heard play once in a playlist that I've listened to many times. Again thanks for y'all's attention to this matter. I am really hopeful that to whatever level of completion you bring this SHUFFLE matter, it can be defined and put to rest. Perhaps it would be easy enough to choose two SHUFFLES, one that plays every song before repeating and another that is ruled by a less strict algorithm but won't repeat songs within a single shuffle session...


I received the PM from Mihail a month ago, and filled out the Google Forms document. I haven't heard anything since then and it's been 4 weeks.

The Google Forms document did ask me to basically re-iterate everything I've posted in this thread over the past year or so which feels like they're not taking any of the data posted by all of us into account. It does feel like Spotify is just giving us lip service at this point.

  1. We all play nice with Spotify and post our complaints and comments on this "Live Ideas" thread
  2. Months and months go by and this "Live Idea" actually gets enough upvotes to move to the next step. Note that this Shuffle play problem has been reported for YEARS on Reddit, been a Live Idea many times before on these very forums, and have received enough votes in the past, but those forum posts were then been pruned with a "Sorry, not going to implement a fix to Shuffle play at this time".
  3. It takes them all this time to even begin to message us that they're aware of the problem and looking to fix it. Again, months and months have gone by.
  4. We finally gain a shred of traction from Mihail. Spotify gets in touch with me via PM and ask me to fill out a form and "describe the exact problem you're having with shuffle play". Uhhhh.. didn't you read any of these 21 pages of comments? They didn't even read MY posts describing the problem apparently. So I just cut and pasted my experiences into their Google Forms.
  5. A month has gone by and no additional follow up, no extra questions from a developer, no "hey try this beta for a week and let me know if it's working better!", not even a "thanks, we received your form and we'll have some more info for you the 2nd week of October!" Just radio silence, no update, no comment, nothing.

Bottom line, I wouldn't get your hopes up. This the same kind of back and forth junk about this shuffle topic we've seen many times in the past.


What continues to baffle me is that we're talking about a shuffle play algorithm. Anyone with any coding experience can generate the proper algorithm in 10 lines of code. I don't know what the reasoning at Spotify Dev HQ why it's such an impossibility for them to figure this out. We're not asking them to create a client that runs natively on the embedded chip of a Denon AV Receiver or a client that uses a color blind accessibility change and interface with the Google virtual assistant within Android Auto. It's shuffle play, the same thing simple randomize and don't repeat thing I've been using since my first CD player in the late 80s.

Thanks for your comment. It was both interesting and disheartening. I
really had hoped the detailed heartfelt letter I sent to customer service
had broken through when I saw they had begun to focus on this matter
finally. Now I'm inclined to feel that this has been much ado about
nothing.. My intention was to be shopping other music service platforms
because I will go to a lesser one for a better SHUFFLE's that
important of a feature to me. I think I will now contact the two customer
service agents that I've communicated with prior to this focus group being
formed and reiterate my concerns that this is a many-years-ongooing issue
that I can expect to not get solved. My future actions will be determined
by the response I get. My intention is to leave the company of Spotify by
the first of next year if this is still just all talk to pacify the few of
us complaining. They shoulde consider that others no doubt feel the same
way and will part company too when a service is found that can figure out
the seemingly ultra-simple fix that a simple TRUE SHUFFLE would require in
the form of man-hours and benefitting the customers.

I'm 100% behind you in your decision. This has been going on way too long. I'm not a coder or techie but I feel there must be another reason behind this resistance to rectify the shuffle problem. I find to believe it is that hard to remedy. Perhaps there is a coder that could shed light on this ongoing problem.