Spotify takes on Rdio: web-native version available in beta

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As rumours earlier in the year suggested, Spotify have made a web version of their music streaming service available, despite no official announcement.

Still in beta, and hidden from the public, the new web-native version works as expected, using a mixture of modern HTML5 and Flash components to offer the entire Spotify library to users. Also, sadly, the web version of Spotify doesn’t work with songs that aren’t available on the service, so there is no way to play songs not available on Spotify, unless you switch to the Desktop version.

In my quick use, Spotify’s Web Player is a great addition, and it all works well, with the music streaming in a reasonable quality with no bugs. Radio is available too. The only problem I find is the lack of a right-click menu, but that can be solved and the lack of local files, which could be solved with a Google Play-style scan, match and upload system. The design is, despite what some had hoped and what rumours had suggested, still very similar to the desktop version of Spotify, with an iOS-feeling design. It’s ugly, but that could change soon according to previous rumours.

For current subscribers looking to use the service in a place with no access to the desktop software, it’s great. Everything works as expected. It’ll also help introduce new users to the service, seeing as you no longer need any external software to get started. But Spotify still looks stale compared to Rdio and discovery is fairly poor in comparison, in my opinion.

To try out the new web version of Spotify early you can follow this link, which goes through Facebook. If you don’t want to try it right now, you’ll be notified on Facebook when it’s made available officially to your account. Then it can be found on play.spotify.com.

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