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Spotify brings video, podcasts and live radio in streaming service revamp

Michael Sawh

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Spotify has announced a new version of its streaming service, which matches playlists with your day and now includes video content.

Despite initial rumours earlier this month that a Tidal and YouTube Music Key-like service was in the offing, Spotify founder Daniel Ek revealed a new-look version of the streaming service, which builds non-music content into your playlists.

Announced at a press conference in New York, Ek claimed the new Spotify platform is now more accessible, more personal and more usable. With playlists still at the heart, they'll now match what you do in the day and remembers those activities to better match music to it.

"The whole notion of genres is changing. People don’t look at things like Hip Hop or Country any more, they are looking at things based on events and activities," Ek said.

He added: "We need to be able to deliver the right music based on who we are, how we’re feeling and what we’re doing, day-by-day.

"The new Spotify will give you the power to integrate music into your life in a way that feels kind of revolutionary but also kind of natural at the same time."

Spotify playlists will also now build in live radio, podcasts and video content with a long list of partners including ESPN, the BBC, Comedy Central, Vogue and GQ among the first to sign up to provide content.

While this is not a strike against video streaming services like Netflix and Amazon Instant Prime Video, it's a clear response to Tidal's video content and YouTube's Music Key service, which allows users to watch music videos without dealing with pre-roll ads.

Expanding Spotify's content beyond music arrives at a time when Apple is tipped to relaunch Beats Music having acquired the company last year. Currently dubbed, 'Beats Music', the streaming music service is rumoured to be officially announced at WWDC 15 next month.

A further feature of the revamped service will see songs automatically matched to your running pace - based on your smartphone's accelorometer. The selected tracks, based on tempo, will reportedly allow fitness fans to better maintain their target pace.

The new Now experience will begin rolling out today, May 20, to iPhone users in the US, UK, Germany and Sweden.

Related: Best Music Streaming Service: Which should you download?

Ek also announced that a staggering 25 billion hours of Spotify has been listened to since the service launched eight years ago. Ek also revealed that two billion times a month someone discovers a new artist from a Spotify playlist.

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