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Spotify is Expanding its AI DJ Globally—In English Only

AI DJ is a mixed bag of a feature, but is being released to dozens of new markets across the world.

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Gif: Spotify

Six months after debuting an AI-powered DJ companion for all your music listening and curation needs, Spotify is now expanding the feature to the global market.

TechCrunch reports that Spotify’s AI DJ will now be available in dozens of markets across the world, including Australia, Barbados, Ireland, Kenya, Nigeria, Pakistan, Singapore, and South Africa. Unfortunately for non-English speakers in those countries, DJ will only be available in the English version of the Spotify app.


DJ is an AI-powered music curation tool that offers cheeky—and slightly annoying—quips about your listening habits and music fun facts interspersed between songs it thinks you’ll like. DJ’s indefinite commitment to the English tongue is likely due to Spotify needing to record bits of dialogue in other languages in order to train the artificial intelligence model that powers the feature.

A Spotify spokesperson told Gizmodo via email that the company will continue to innovate DJ, but didn’t disclose any specifics on how or when Spotify will train the AI to speak other languages.


DJ’s voice is modelled after Xavier “X” Jernigan, Spotify’s Head of Cultural Partnerships, and is based on an AI model from Spotify’s acquisition of Sonatic, a London-based tech company that specializes in AI voices. Writers at Spotify generate scripts based on Jernigan’s own cadence, inflection, and slang usage, which are then fed into a model that Spotify trained with machine learning to mimic Jernigan’s voice that generates DJ’s commentary.

DJ is Spotify’s latest foray into AI, but the music streaming service is no stranger to artificial intelligence—it uses AI to feed you customized playlists like Daily Mixes, Decade Mixes, and Mood Mixes. Spotify told Gizmodo in February that 81% of its users enjoy the platform’s personalization features, like Spotify Wrapped, and DJ has been a concerted effort in that direction.

I covered the AI DJ during its release back in February, and I had a lot of mixed feelings. While it’s cool to see Spotify innovating on the listening experience, it’s hard to feel like the AI isn’t just Spotify’s attempt at chasing the wave of AI-forward products from tech companies—Spotify said in its blog that DJ is one of the company’s most talked-about product launches ever. I found that AI DJ was a deeply annoying addition to my daily listening ritual and mimicked the worst parts of listening to the radio. Since then, I regret to inform you that I haven’t touched the AI DJ, opting instead to hunt for and curate music on my own. But, if DJ is more your speed, you can access the feature by navigating to the Music feed on the Spotify mobile app’s home page and tapping the wobbly green circle.