Spotify Mashes Music and Short Podcasts Into a New Playlist for Your Miserable Commute

Being stuck in this would be 100x worse if not for tunes.
Being stuck in this would be 100x worse if not for tunes.
Photo: Getty Images

Hot off the heels of releasing its standalone Stations app, Spotify is leaning even harder into that whole ‘reinvent the radio’ vibe. Today, the music streaming company released a new playlist called “Your Daily Drive” that uses an algorithm to mash together short-form podcasts and music.

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According to Spotify, Americans spend close to 70 billion hours per year behind the wheel—mostly commuting to and from work or school. The new playlist is designed to combine news talk shows with personalized music recommendations. So, something akin to your favorite artists, mashed up with the Discovery Weekly playlist, and news bites peppered throughout. For news, Spotify says it’ll source from “reputable” sources, including the Wall Street Journal, NPR, and PRI, and will update throughout the day to keep things fresh.

Basically, the playlist is sort of like a personalized radio station based on what you actually listen to—instead of relying on a singular genre of music like how current radio stations operate. This, along with the Stations app, seems to indicate Spotify is doubling down on curated, AI-enabled experiences in its attempts to dominate Apple Music, Pandora, and other music streaming apps.

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A personalized-yet-effortless playlist to replace the unpredictable—and sometimes questionable—taste of radio stations would be nice. No offense to radio jockeys, it’s just sometimes you feel the urge to run your car off the road when that one summer hit comes on for the fourth time in an hour. (I’m looking at you, Havana by Camilla Cabello).

This also marks the first time that Spotify is blending podcasts and music together—which could be a toss-up in terms of listenability. While Spotify says it considers ‘relevancy and personality of the hosts’ in picking podcasts, length is an issue to consider. Exactly how long will the short-form podcast news updates be? Will it shuffle in the occasional hourlong episode of a podcast you already like? A Spotify spokesperson said it won’t do that and instead stick to short-form podcasts.

U.S. commuters (even those without cars) can start streaming the Your Daily Drive playlist starting today.

Consumer tech reporter by day, danger noodle by night. No, I'm not the K-Pop star.

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DISCUSSION

dnapl
Dense non aqueous phase liquid

The end goal of vehicle autonomy isn’t safety or productivity or carsex (see Jalopnik, keyword Tesla, autopilot, Pornhub) - it’s monetizing those 70 billion traffic jam hours.

Seems like the new marketing hire at Spotify borrowed grandpas car and couldn’t grasp the concept of radio station presets - and eureka! Radio on computers.