Spotify is already killing it when it comes to dynamic recommendations and frankly incredible data visualizations, though other imitators like YouTube Music are trying to step up with their own feature clones. Other platforms have a long way to go before they beat it on social tools, though, and the company may have a work-in-progress ace up its sleeve: Spotify may be working on a new feature called "Tastebuds" which promises improved social discovery of music "through friends whose taste you trust."
For many of us, music doesn't exist in isolation, though plenty of platforms present it that way. Discovery and playback are often a social process, and lots of customers that stick to Spotify do so because of its current social tools. You can follow friends as well as artists to keep track of their future releases and playlists, see the music your friends listen to, and even follow specific playlists assembled by social groups, artists, and individuals. It's pretty much the social music platform.
Spotify is working on Tastebuds, letting users discover music through their friends pic.twitter.com/uqUXmRvEKo
— Jane Manchun Wong (@wongmjane) December 18, 2019
This upcoming Tastebuds feature was spotted by Jane Wong, noted leaker of all the things, and it even appears to be partially live right now, accessible via the Spotify site, though it is non-functional.
The description at the current page for Tastebuds says, "Now you can discover music through friends whose taste you trust." We don't entirely know what sort of interface this might have, which is the big hurdle it would have to clear, but it sounds like you'll be able to follow individual users (like me, for example) and see what it is they're playing as a way to discover new tunes. It could be similar to the Friends Weekly functionality XDA spotted in the Spotify app last year.
As further noted by Wong, there's actually a separate app called "tastebuds" for iOS that did something similar applied to dating, and also worked with Spotify. That could hint at an acquisition, or potential renaming before release. We'll just have to see how this new feature manifests once it's official — if it arrives at all.