Kim Kizyma
Graphic Designer + Creative Technologist


Blog Posts and Ideas by Kim Kizyma

My problem with Spotify

In 2018, we certainly have a lot of options for listening to music. Most of it, however, is streaming.

Spotify: the streaming solution I love to hate

Spotify: the streaming solution I love to hate

A few years ago, I stopped buying physical copies of albums and started using Spotify after my huge brick of an iPod broke (for the third or fourth time in a two-year timeframe). I brought it into the Apple Store, and the Genius Bar genius actually laughed when I asked for them to repair it. I said what am I supposed to do when I have 40K+ tracks? He said either add the MP3s to your iPhone or stream. I can't lie, I really didn't like these solutions for a couple of reasons.

I miss this lil guy

I miss this lil guy

First of all, I had an iPhone with only 32GB of storage. There's no way my music is fitting on that device. My iPod was 256GB and it was half full. I liked having two dedicated devices, as it would let me not completely drain my phone's battery when just listening to music.

Secondly, I am a collector. I am so used to buying physical copies of everything. Obviously this is preference. But, music, movies, books. I buy vinyl records, so why would I not buy CDs and just import them to my iMac and drag them onto my iPod classic? I didn't get why that was so funny and antiquated. But I guess now I do.

I really liked Spotify. Even before I went to Premium. From the jump, it seemed to have almost all the music I was looking for, especially when they added The Beatles music catalog in 2015. Sure, I added a few extra songs from mixtapes into Spotify and I essentially had enough of my old music library to keep me happy for the time being.

So, I kept using Spotify. I began creating playlists and organizing my favorite tracks into different groups. As a lifetime iPod user, I found that there was certainly a learning curve. To my knowledge, there's no easy way to shuffle by a particular artist. I know a work-around solution is to create a playlist with that artists entire discography and then shuffle that, but there's no way I'm doing that for all the different artists I listen to. I could also go to the artists page and play directly through that, but then I won't have it all saved to my device, meaning I'm using extra LTE data which over time will add up. And it's just dumb; I liked my iPod not using data or my phone's battery.

There also was a social aspect to the Spotify desktop and mobile apps that I really liked. It was something my iPod classic could never do. My sisters and friends and I used to share songs back and forth and it was a cool way to talk about songs and share music we think someone else will be into. It blows my mind that Spotify has since removed this capability completely. I've contacted Spotify support on Twitter and they confirmed, it is gone, but you can still share music...but, not natively. You essentially have to do it through Facebook or iMessage/SMS. Why does that make any sense? Why is Spotify taking me to Facebook to share music in Messenger? Unless Facebook owns Spotify...I really don't understand this concept.

My message to Spotify: please let me share songs through your native desktop app again. I don't like Facebook enough to log in and I especially hate the idea of sharing music through Messenger.

Is there a better streaming solution out there? Probably. Do I want to rebuild my entire music catalog again? Definitely not. So. I'm complaining to complain, I guess. Any work-arounds or alternatives are appreciated!