Spotify is testing out a new feature that lets you select a favorite speaker from the Spotify app. Once selected, the app will ask if you want to transfer your current listening session to that speaker when it’s nearby. First spotted by Thurrott, the feature uses the Spotify Connect function, which is already used to give the Spotify app control over certain playback devices like Sonos speakers. Users who have access to the test are being prompted to choose a favorite from a list of available Spotify Connect devices.
Thurrott reports that the feature works well. The website used it to transfer listening sessions to a Harmon Kardon Invoke speaker when the user returned home from being outside — the Spotify app prompting the person to switch via a pop-up dialog box on his iPhone. For now, the feature limits users to a single favorite device, and Thurrott said it wouldn’t recognize its Windows 10 PC as an available Connect device.
Setting a favorite device will be a big convenience for Spotify listeners who routinely find themselves switching from their phones to their Wi-Fi speakers — something you currently need to open the app to do. If this test is a success, it would make sense for Spotify to let its customers pick multiple favorite devices, like a speaker at work, or a car audio system.
Helping people manage their music across multiple locations is becoming a strong trend. Apple already announced that iOS 13 will enable a similarly easy hand-off of Apple Music from iOS devices to its HomePod smart speaker. Media server giant Plex has been encouraging its users to think of it as the perfect companion for on-the-go listening as it can act as an intermediary between phones, PCs, TVs, and smart speakers for podcasts, personal music libraries, and Tidal.
If the recent discovery of a soon-to-be-released Sonos Bluetooth speaker is accurate, it could mean that Sonos is about to make major strides in portable listening. The Sonos app is already home to a vast array of music services including Spotify, Apple Music, Tidal, and Plex, so the ability to stream to Bluetooth devices — like speakers and headphones — would give the company a huge edge over its competitors, especially if it also creates an automatic hands-off feature.