Spotify tips

Set Spotify as Default on iPhone

If you’re an iPhone user like I am, chances are you have been waiting long for a way to set Spotify as your default music player app on iPhone. Well, fortunately, with all the new iOS 14 features, Apple finally decided to let users do this as well. If you’re interested, you should check out our guide on how to set Spotify as default music app on iPhone.

Powerful Search

While searching for music using the artist, album or song title on Spotify is common, the music streaming giant also enables you to perform advanced searches via operators like AND/OR/NOT, as well as narrow your search results to the year, genre, and more. You can also combine these advanced search techniques, like Pink Floyd year:1965-1995 NOT year:1990 for tastefully precise results. This makes it much simpler for me to search for Queens of the Stone Age discovery. Here are all the advanced search terms a Spotify user should know:

  • year: Will display music from a particular year. You can also enter a range of years as well.
  • genre: Will display music from a particular genre.
  • label: Will display music released by the label
  • isrc:  Will display tracks matching ID number according to the International Standard Recording Code.
  • upc:  Will display albums matching the ID number according to the Universal Product Code.

Find Explicit/Remix Tracks

Spotify is designed for use by everyone. While some users are more comfortable with a clean version of the track, there are others who would pick the explicit or remix of their favorite track. The search shows the most popular version of the track and it might not necessarily be what you like, however, searching for its alternative version is no chore. At the end of an album, the streaming giant offers an option to check out the alternate versions of a track or album via the ‘X More Releases’ option. Not every track or album sports this option on the desktop or web app.

Collaborative Playlists

If you and your friend have an almost identical taste in music, the collaborative playlists feature could be super fun to check out. Spotify allows you to create playlists which you can share with your friends and they can edit the same – add or remove songs from the playlist. Collaborative playlists are marked by a hollow circle next to their name. To create a collaborative playlist, you’ll first need to create a simple playlist and then tap the ‘three dots’ icon and choose the ‘Collaborative Playlist’ option from the menu in your Spotify desktop or mobile app. If you want to turn an existing playlist into a collaborative one on the Spotify mobile app, then go to “Your Library > Playlists” and tap the ‘three dots’ icon next to the playlist and select the Make Collaborative option. All that’s left to do now is sharing the playlist’s link with friends, making this feature super handy at parties where anyone can add music to the playlist.

Transfer Playlist from Other Services

Spotify being super late to the music streaming scene in India means that there’s a high probability that you’ve been using some other streaming service for your music needs. I myself had stuck to Google Play Music and accumulated a lot of artists, liked tracks, and obviously a myriad of playlists on there. Your collection on a certain music streaming service could be a primary reason for you being wary of making the switch, but don’t fret as you can bring all that over to Spotify pretty easily with the help of a third-party service called Soundiiz. It allows you to bring your collections from a number of streaming platforms and move them to other ones in minutes.

Maintain a Detailed Spotify History

Spotify maintains a record of all the tracks you’ve played recently and you can check the same by clicking the ‘Queue’ button from the bottom bar and navigating to the ‘History’ tab. However, it isn’t really exhaustive and doesn’t offer any insights into your tastes or listening pattern. Well, this is where Last.fm comes to the rescue. I bet a lot of you must have heard of it since the service has been around for quite some time, but it’s still relevant and popular today as well. You can set up Spotify Scrobbling in Last.fm to get a detailed Spotify playback history log, weekly reports with insight into your music tastes. To be able to maintain a detailed history log, simply follow the steps defined below:

  1. Navigate to the Last.fm website via this link. Tap the profile icon at the top right and select the Settings option once you’ve logged in.
  2. In the Settings menu, head to the ‘Applications’ tab and connect your Spotify account next to the ‘Spotify Scrobbling’ feature. Note: Scrobbling, for those unaware, means the name of the track you listen on a streaming platform is sent to another website for safe-keeping.

Add Local Library to Spotify

Unfortunately, Spotify’s catalog is currently lacking a number of artists, all because of its failure to secure a partnership with Warner Music in India. But you don’t need to worry if you don’t find a song or album that you’re looking for because you can yourself add it to the streaming service from your personal offline collection. This feature is limited just to Spotify’s desktop app, so tap the downwards arrow next to your username to open the Settings and scroll down to the ‘Local Files’ section. Here you can add the folders where your music is stored on your computer via the “Add a Source” button. You cannot add solo tracks to Spotify’s local file catalog, only folders from where the app will scan and bring in every track. You can check out my local library below, which surely packs all of Twenty One Pilots’ tracks due to their lack in India: You can also upload custom playlist images in Spotify by the way, in case you’re interested in giving your playlists a more personalised look. Also, if you make a lot of playlists, make sure you use folders to organise playlists in Spotify as well.

Share Links With Timestamps

If you’ve been using Spotify for some time, you would already know that sharing songs is super easy as there’s a dedicated option available for the same next to each track, album, and playlist. However, it’s also possible to share specific parts of the track too. There are times you simply want your friends to check out that guitar breakdown or bass drops in a track. It’s possible to share the exact minute and seconds you want a friend to start listening to a song from and here are the steps on how you can do just that:

  1. Open the Spotify desktop app, navigate to the track you want to share and tap on the ‘three-dots’ icon next to the track to see the Share option.
  2. From the share menu, you’ll need to select the ‘Copy Spotify URI’ option and then comes the most important part – adding the timestamp to this code. The URI code looks something like this (spotify:track:2EtDBM1HREttw143IwZvJ0) and now you need to add the timestamp (suppose 2 minute and 9 seconds) after a hashtag at the end of the URI code:
spotify:track:2EtDBM1HREttw143IwZvJ0#2:09

Note: The URI codes are available in the Spotify desktop app. Neither the web or mobile apps allow you to share or play the same. 3. You can now copy and share this time-stamped Spotify URI code with friends, who can then paste it into their desktop app to listen to the track from that instant. The URI code doesn’t work with Spotify’s mobile and web apps, showing a ‘no results found’ error.

Share Songs to Instagram Stories

Gone are the days of sharing screenshots of the new song you like to Instagram Stories in India. With Spotify finally debuting in the country, you can now easily share songs, albums or playlists to your Stories for others to discover the same.

  1. To do so, you will first need to select the ‘Share’ option under the ‘three-dots icon’ menu from the Now Playing screen.
  2. You would then see the Instagram Stories option in the Share menu, which on tapping redirects you to the Stories creation screen and shows the artwork of the song, album or playlist you’re about to share. Simply jazz up this story with stickers or a caption and hit ‘Your Story’ for all to see.

Control Spotify in Google Maps

Another popular Spotify integration made its debut towards the end of last year and it’s none other than Google Maps. Music is an integral piece of road trips or long drives and Google knows it too, so it integrated the option to control Spotify and Google Play Music playback with its mapping app. You can enable the same by following the steps detailed below:

  1. Open the hamburger menu in Google Maps, tap on the Settings option at the bottom, followed by the ‘Navigation settings’ option.
  2. Now toggle the button next to the ‘Show media playback controls’ option and select “Spotify” as your default media app. You will need to link your Spotify account to Google Maps to make this integration work.
  3. You’re now all set to command your Spotify playlists right from the navigation screen. Simply select a drop location and start navigation to see the Spotify icon on the left side, which on tapping shows the controls (and an option to browse recent songs and playlists) at the bottom.