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Spotify Rolling Out Video Service to Android Users This Week


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I don’t even remember the last time I listened to the radio. That’s because, whenever I need music, Spotify is there for me. For a mere ten bucks for their no-ads Premium Service, I can stream all the music I want (well, almost all – damn you Taylor Swift and Prince!) Well now, Spotify is offering even more by providing a video service as well!

Spotify has been talking about moving into video since May of last year, when they started launching video in beta to test what users would respond to. After all, Spotify users are there for the music, and often minimize the app while they’re doing other stuff – not exactly the most ideal circumstances under which to try and push video. However, according to the Wall Street Journal, the initial testing has informed what the rollout will look like, and it makes a lot of sense for a service of its type.

The WSJ spoke with Shiva Rajaraman, Spotify’s VP of product, who explains:

What has Spotify learned so far? It’s early, but Mr. Rajaraman said that Spotify has found that presenting contextually relevant videos—based on the kind of music people listen to or Web videos that are simply tied to music—seems to spur people to watch clips. For example, Maker Studios’ popular comedic rap series “Epic Rap Battles” has clicked with users in early tests.

On the flip side, Spotify found during the beta period that it was offering too many ways for people to find video. So, the company has focused on compartmentalizing video content and creating programming packages, like “News of the Week” or “Laughs at Lunch,” Mr. Rajaraman said.

The content won’t quite be full episodes of TV shows or films…yet. It will mostly be short clips (like the clips we tend to share from shows like SNL or The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon) licensed from and curated by partners such as ESPN, Comedy Central, the BBC, Vice Media ABC, Condé Nast Entertainment, Turner’s Adult Swim, TBS, Fusion, and Maker Studios.  They may eventually move into original content if this all works out.

The video service will be introduced to Android by the end of this week, and iPhone next week in the U.S., the U.K, Germany and Sweden. However, it is for mobile apps only, so if you use Spotify on your desktop, you’re outta luck.

This is an interesting step. The music streaming service space is increasingly crowded, and the video content space moreso. However, Spotify doing both may tap into a market that wants one-stop shopping for all their entertainment needs. If Spotify can become a hub for all our music, podcast, and video needs, it’ll make them even more of a player than they already are.

What do you think? Are you excited about video content on Spotify?

(via Yahoo! Tech, image via qtpaxa/Flickr)

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