It’s that time of year again when Spotify users gather under their favorite green app and undo the data-based gifts, courtesy of their year-end review. Being a Spotify Premium user for several years, I did the same, forcing a smile when the Musical Personality feature called me “replay.”
But this year, I looked at Apple Music users with a little more envy than usual. Not that its equivalent feature, Apple Music Replay, is a massive improvement over Wrapped — in fact, it feels more like a shameful rip-off when compared to the animation it uses to summarize its users’ listening habits over the past year.
Apple Music Replay, though, does offer something I’d love to see in a Spotify Wrapped — it actually lets you access your listening data (if not animation) throughout the year, instead of just late November.
And these are the kinds of ideas I’d like to dig into the Spotify app outside of Wrapped Season, rather than having to use third-party apps.
Not just for Christmas
There’s no doubt that Spotify has it all wrapped up nicely when it comes to a great year-end animation for your listening habits.
For a start, it is strange that the equivalent on Apple Music Replay is only available on platform site (Opens in a new tab) instead of within the app. On Spotify, it will only appear in the Home section of the app (as long as you’ve updated to the latest version 8.7.78).
Spotify Wrapped Animation Tour is more comprehensive than Apple Music Replay. Apple is shorter and basically compiles the best song, artist, and album of the year, along with the top five genres.
Meanwhile, Spotify explains how many different genres I’ve dived into and what I’m listening to at certain times of the day (I seem to be talking about “Warm Good Vibes Angst” in the afternoon, which is probably my Myers Briggs personality type).
But unusually for Apple, its music playback is less lock-down than Spotify’s. If you go to Web version (Opens in a new tab) At any given time, you can see some (albeit limited) stats like number of plays and hours listened, along with the most streamed artists and albums. The Replay playlist, also available in the Listen Now tab of the app, will also be updated every week with your most-listened tracks.
Scroll down the page in the year-end animation of your music replay and you’ll also see “Top 10” lists of your most played songs, artists, and albums, giving you a little more depth than Spotify’s top five. However, while Spotify Wrapped and Apple Music Replay both have their strengths, they both scratch the surface of the kind of music data insights possible in other services.
Right now, the only way to get year-round data insights into your Spotify listening habits is through third-party apps like Stats.fm (iOS, Android), which are currently adding Apple Music support.
This app is a very handy way to get lists of your top tracks, artists, and albums over custom periods, assuming you’re happy to give it some extensive permissions. If you have been using Spotify for a while, you can also get some interesting coins by downloading your Spotify account historical data from the site. Privacy section Then upload it to an app like Stats.fm.
This kind of data opens up the potential for some great insights, like what you listen to most during a given year, or how much you actually listen to albums instead of songs. My only real issue is that the type of music I listen to while I work (which Spotify has described as “weird psychedelic melodrama”) can skew this data toward music that helps focus, rather than the kind that really means more to me.
Last.fm really pioneered whole music data insights, way before the Spotify Wrapped concept seemed to be Raised by Project Intern in 2019. As one of the first social networks, it has taken the whole concept to the next level with its Neighbors feature, which connected you with service-based music buddies based on your listening habits.
While this might be a step too far for most people, it shows the wide-ranging possibilities of our music listening data. For now, though, I’d be happy to see Spotify’s wrap-around style dashboard throughout the year, even if I suspect its marketing power, just like Christmas, is made more effective by its rarity.