Miss Turntable.fm? Spotify might bring back its best feature with ‘Social Listening’

Spotify appears to be testing a new feature called Social Listening, which would let multiple users add songs to a queue in real time, somewhat like the defunct social media platform Turntable.fm (minus the chat and open invite policy. The feature, unearthed by reverse-engineering expert Jane Manchun Wong and reported on this morning by TechCrunch, is just a test right now. There’s no indication that it would ever make its way to the consumer version of Spotify.

But the screenshots Wong was able to pull from code hidden in the Android version of Spotify shows a pretty sleek setup screen where users can scan each other’s codes or share a link and then create a shared queue. According to Wong, the feature appears to be only available for Spotify employees who are likely testing it internally.

Spotify tells TechCrunch, “We’re always testing new products and experiences, but have no further news to share at this time,” which is the company’s standard boilerplate answer for when a work-in-progress feature makes its way to the public inadvertently. That said, Social Listening sounds like a really neat idea that would be great to have as a full-fledged feature in mobile Spotify.

It’s too often the case in party scenarios or groups that multiple people want to play music or, at the very least, add one or two songs to the queue, only to either have to ask someone to do it for you or sync up to whatever speaker is playing the music via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi and then overtake the current DJ for the digital right to select the music. With Social Listening, multiple people can easily pair up and avoid overwriting a song choice or ruining a carefully curated queue.

Spotify already lets you make collaborative playlists, but this feature goes further by letting you create a list of songs to play in real time without having to go through the laborious process of selecting songs, adding them to a list, and arranging the order as you see fit. Here’s hoping Spotify lets it see the light of day officially.