Social distancing and the resulting distance between us and our friends has been with us for many months now thanks to the Coronavirus. The streaming service Spotify has now announced a new version of the Group Sessions, which will help us to listen together – and make this situation a bit more bearable.
Due to the Corona pandemic, many of us are cut off today from friends, colleagues, and family members and have to make do with Zoom meetings or the like. In May Spotify already announced these so-called "Group Sessions", which allowed several people to control a playlist at the same location. But with the announced revision of the feature this restriction was eliminated.
This means that it no longer makes a difference whether the participants – who according to Spotify must all be paying premium subscribers – are located in the same house, town, or country. The groups, which may consist of two to five participants, can listen to music or podcasts together as before.
According to Spotify a group session can be started from the connection menu at the bottom left of the playback screen. The generated link can then be distributed to friends via a messenger, for example, so that they can join the session.
Spotify: Group Sessions allow you to listen to music and podcasts together
Once you have joined a group session, any participant can take control of the currently running playlist. Songs or podcasts can be paused, started, and skipped. It is also possible to customize the playlist. For example, each participant can add new songs to the running program as usual.
Spotify also gives some examples of how to do this for group sessions. For example, you could listen to a podcast together with a remote girl- or boyfriend. Another use case could be sports. You could train with friends across borders and time zones and listen to the same music.
Group Sessions is still considered a beta version by Spotify. So users have to be prepared for some changes in the feature until Spotify has agreed on final features and functionality. As already mentioned, all participants must have a premium subscription.