Spotify’s Discover Weekly aims to create a weekly mixtape based on listening habits

BY Evan Selleck

Published 20 Jul 2015


A major selling point of Apple Music is its human curation, which drops algorithms to pick a listener’s next song, and relies on the tastes of an actual human being.

Of course, it’s not just an unknown presence on the other end of Apple Music that pulls the strings. Apple Music has a “like” (love) system that allows users to tell Apple Music’s unseen string pullers what music a particular listener actually likes, which subsequently better formulates playlists within the “For You” section of Apple Music. The pull here is the human curation, whereas other popular services, like Spotify, put together playlists with the help of running algorithms.

That’s not changing with Spotify Discover, a new feature that Spotify plans to roll out soon. Engadget was able to test out the feature for several days already, and found that it works like a weekly mixtape, refreshed every Monday to populate a playlist that boasts two hours worth of content. That content is put together by the equations behind the scenes, as usual, but relies heavily on the individual user’s listening habits. Spotify says that the more a user listens to the new playlist, the better it will get.

Discover Weekly will show up above a user’s saved playlists, and it will populate new music every Monday. Users can save individual songs, add to other playlists, and the tracks can be shared — all common features within Spotify.

Engadget says that with their time with the new discovery feature, the tracks that Discover Weekly put together were actually quite good, and the populated songs based on the user’s listening history were pretty spot-on with determining new music to listen to.

Human curation has been a nice bullet point for Apple ever since the unveiling of Apple Music, but it still remains to be seen if it’s a big enough feature for people to switch from other music streaming services, or even warrant enough of a difference when picking the next song that pops up in a playlist. Interestingly enough, Apple’s upcoming News service will use human curation to choose stories, too, so Apple’s focus on this type of selection for content seems to be the main focus moving forward.

Are you liking Apple Music so far?

[via Engadget]