Sunday, February 5, 2012

Spotify Hidden Feature: Playlist Search

I wrote about how to use advance search to look for classical music on Spotify before; Spotify's official site also offers various examples of wildcard searches. Today I discovered a hidden feature in Spotify's desktop app: playlist search.

Example 1: playlist:pitchfork

I browsed the five results in the first page, they are all quite popular (8k+ subscribers), but strangely, no playlists from Pitchfork's official account was shown in the first ten pages of results (even though this one has 35k+ subscribers). Apparently, the reason is, there's no "pitchfork" in the titles of those playlists.

Example 2: playlist:mozart

Here begins the confusion. It shows a list of seemingly random playlists - many of them have no subscribers at all. I am not going to browse through a list of playlists titled just Mozart unless I'm really bored, and I doubt many users will. I didn't see my Mozart Chronological Catalogue playlist (800+ subscribers) in the first 10 pages of results, and couldn't find anything when I searched for "Mozart catalogue".

Example 3: playlist:tom moon

My intention was to find out if other users could find my 1,000 Recordings To Hear Before You Die Based on Tom Moon's Book playlist (1.7k+ subscribers) through playlist search. The answer is negative - it only shows dozens of playlists consist of only one album: Tom Petty's Full Moon Fever. This brings up another problem in Spotify: the unwanted one-album playlists.

Why would users create a playlist for a single album? Because they have to; there's simply no other way to save an album for further listening. Playlist management is always a weakness in Spotify, after a user created dozens or hundreds of playlists, it becomes really hard to look for or even remember what's in the library. Creating a "favourite albums" playlist partly solves the problem, but I think Spotify could add a simple function that vastly improves the user experience, for now I call it My Collection.

We create and subscribe to various playlists for rainy days, parties, holidays, etc., all tracks in those playlists go into our Spotify Library, but I think many of us also treasure the notion of a personal music collection, consists of only the albums/tracks we really think as "our music", i.e. those we would buy before music subscription comes into being. What I suggest is: add an "Add" button for tracks, albums and even artists, and show music added to My Collection is grid view, as in Devices (see image below).

I don't think it's the same as Starred tracks, which would become hard to browse after I added in hundreds of albums; it also cannot hold more than 10,000 tracks. For unknown reasons, users can no longer star an album in the latest version of Spotify.

This Collection function also creates useful stats for Spotify: how many users added a particular track/album to their collections; how many followed (added to collection) an artist. They can also add another handy function here: show new releases/newly added recordings from an artist to their Spotify followers as a unread (unheard?) count in their icons in the grid view. How many times did we stumble upon a promising release from an unknown band every year, and how do we keep track of their follow-ups? Why do I need a 3rd party service to tell me a new Radiohead or Leonard Cohen album has become available on Spotify? This function improves user experience, as well as offering the musicians a chance to gain loyalty, other than one-time exposure.

I think Spotify is still working on playlist search (hence the hidden-ness); hope it becomes a truly useful function soon.


  1. This is something I have been wanting for quite a while now.

    I am one of those people - my 'collection' is just a bunch of one-album playlists.

    1. I like your idea of a 'collection' of albums as well - tried to put it into words on Spotify forum but not sure I succeeded as not many followers!? I think the mobile device view should be implemented as an album view, it would make browsing much faster and more enjoyable. The new forum post is here: - just in case anyone fancies a look :0)

    2. Spotify is the best app. Listen to free music with premium version on apk mod 2020

    3. Great Article Image Processing Projects Deep Learning Projects for Final Year JavaScript Training in Chennai JavaScript Training in Chennai The Angular Training covers a wide range of topics including Components, Angular Directives, Angular Services, Pipes, security fundamentals, Routing, and Angular programmability. The new Angular TRaining will lay the foundation you need to specialise in Single Page Application developer. Angular Training Project Centers in Chennai

  2. Something I noticed while I was checking out the searches you posted.

    If you type Tom Moon and then click on the search area to use the instant searching function, your playlist is shown in the playlist list, but if you click "show all results" your playlist is no where to be seen, and only shows the results you saw.

    1. I think that is because instant search shows results from the playlists you created/subscribed first, whereas common search doesn't. I use instant search mostly to locate my own playlists...

    2. Sounds reasonable, must be something similar to that, I am not subscribed to any of your playlists, I found your post via a retweet by @afront.

      Also searching for Sea or Number doesn't bring up your playlists and some of those playlist's in the list with those searches have no subscribers at all.

      Anyway starting to go off the topic a bit now. just thought it was interesting that your playlist did come up in the instant search area.

  3. Michael Kors handbags can now be found on many discounted sites for fractions of retail prices. The best option for individuals wanting to own Michael Kors handbags is to shop at online discount stores. A great place to shop for these luxury bags is eBay.
    Friendly Links: Michael Kors Handbags Sale Clearance | Michael Kors Outlet Store

  4. This is one the best blogs i have ever come across on the internet. Have been reading posts from your blog, really interesting. Independence Day Speech in Malayalam

  5. Michael Kors Handbags On Sale,
    You can find Michael Kors handbags in many department stores around the country.
    Michael Kors Purses Outlet,
    They are being seen all over the place.
    Michael Kors Bags On Sale,
    There are so many fabulous handbags to fall in love with.
    MK Handbags,
    To find these amazing handbags you can also shop online for all your Michael Kors products.

  6. Positive site, where did u come up with the information on this posting?I have read a few of the articles on your website now, and I really like your style. Thanks a million and please keep up the effective work. Delete History

  7. I am happy with your article, Fajartoto think your website is pretty good. Many articles are very useful for everyone. I am sure your website will grow in the future. Fajartoto will always support your website, hopefully more advanced. keep the spirit... thanks

    agen togel terpercaya
    togel online
    bandar togel terpercaya
    bandar togel terbaik
    situs togel online
    situs togel terbesar
    judi roulette online
    prediksi togel jitu
    syair togel hk

  8. Michael Kors Factory Outlet,
    has always been classic in style.
    How To Tell If A Michael Kors Purse Is Real,
    any fashionista about the most coveted handbags.
    Michael Kors Outlet Mall,
    they are acclaimed for their ageless yet bold designs.
    Coach Outlet Store Online Free Shipping,
    every bag is a art piece combining the most exquisite materials.
    Coach Outlet Online Sale,
    having an extensive variety of designs.
    Coach Factory Outlet Online 48 Hour Sale,
    tell me about the classic monogram design.
    Coach Bags On Sale Online,
    you just have to look around in the right places to find it.
    Discount Michael Kors Outlet,
    thus to choose a right design handbag combining practicality.
    Macys Michael Kors Bags Sale,
    style and reflecting your distinctive status is a great essentiality.
    Michael Kors Store Near Me,
    this one would suitable for most occasions.
    Coach Outlet Clearance,
    you probably have very definite taste in handbags.
    Online Life Coach,
    you could very easily be tricked into getting one.
    Life Coach Certification Online,
    is still a far better purchase.

  9. Yes, even more than money, we need people to hear us and tell their friends about the mind-blowing new band they discovered. Getting our music put on Spotify is a critical step in this process.see here now

  10. This is really a nice and informative, containing all information and also has a great impact on the new technology. Check it out here: Spotify Promotion Packages

  11. You can try MusConv. Transfer your tracks and playlists to Apple Music, Spotify, Google Music and more for free with MusConv tool

  12. thanks for posting this one. Very enjoyable. I'd never heard of these we work as
    Rehabilitation centre in Punjab who provides several types of therapies and facilities
    by which addicted people can get best aid. We have certified and professional
    medical staff who always care of patients. For more details,
    visit the website or call us.
    De Addiction Center in Ludhiana

    nasha mukti kendra in himachal pardesh

    Rehabilitation Center In Punjab

    Nasha mukti kendra in Jammu

    Nasha mukti kendra in Ludhiana

    thanks for posting this one. Very enjoyable.
    Property Dealer in Patiala

  13. When you listen to your favourite music with lyrics it creates a positive emotional experience, Spotify Playlist Placement which causes your body to release certain hormones that strengthen your body's self-defense mechanism.

  14. If you want a better internet connection, I recommend you change the password of your wifi first, full tutorials on 192.168.l.l it's easy to follow. Change wifi password just in case.

  15. I found so many interesting stuff in your blog especially its discussion. From the tons of comments on your articles, I guess I am not the only one having all the enjoyment here! keep up the good work... Spotify Premium APK

  16. Thank you for such a well written article. It’s full of insightful information and entertaining descriptions. Your point of view is the best among many. buy 50 instagram likes gradual

  17. Otherwise known as Mp3 blogs, that allow you to download new music. Once you have downloaded the track simply listen and give your opinion (your opinion is not required); the great thing about this medium is that it gives you access to safe music downloads for free. best professional headphones for mixing

  18. Great survey, I'm sure you're getting a great response. buy spotify plays

  19. Gangsta rap - is a subgenre of hip-jump music which created during the last part of the 1980s. 'Gangsta' is a minor departure from the spelling of 'criminal'. After the prominence of Dr. Dre's The Chronic in 1992, gangsta rap turned into the most monetarily rewarding subgenre of hip-bounce. buy youtube subscibers

  20. Hey There. I found your blog using msn. This is a very well written article. I’ll be sure to bookmark it and come back to read more of your useful info. Thanks for the post. I’ll definitely return. buy spotify followers

  21. Yes, I am entirely agreed with this article, and I just want say that this article is very helpful and enlightening. I also have some precious piece of concerned info !!!!!!Thanks. soundcloud vs spotify