Spotify has launched a new service called Connect that will play music streamed through Spotify’s music system and apps directly from a mobile device to compatible Connect external speakers. As well as improving the sound quality of Spotify tracks, Connect is also about syncing up the various different Spotify services in a more seamless way. Listeners will be able to swap from their phone’s speakers directly to Connect speakers without dropping a beat. Any device signed into the same Spotify account will be able to control playback.
Spotify’s move is an unashamed play to move the service far beyond the somewhat cage-like confines of a smartphone or tablet, where the music experience is a little limited by the audio technology in a typical phone. By syncing up several Spotify devices to one account, the company is also hoping to cement a place in user’s homes, becoming the go-to site for a family’s music needs.
This sort of maneuver is not new, of course, with Apple’s AirPlay system being perhaps the biggest rival for Spotify. Apple’s long-enabled remote access to speakers and other connected devices through iTunes and its new AirPlay system is even licensed to speaker manufacturers so that users can stream music from, say, an iPhone, directly to AirPlay compatible devices. Apple is also on the verge of releasing a streaming music addition to iTunes, dubbed iTunes Radio, that may severely threaten the business mode of Spotify and its peers. Google’s new Chromecast device may also be seen as a rival to Spotify’s new trick.