If you prefer your nightly game binges with a side of sick beats, you'll want to check out the new Spotify app for Sony's PlayStation 4. The PS4-optimized version of the popular streaming service is now available, and based on our hands-on time with the software, using Spotify while hopping in and out of your favorite games is joyously seamless.
It only takes a few seconds to log into Spotify for PlayStation, which is available to all PS4 owners who update their system. If you're already logged into Spotify on your mobile device, you can simply activate the Spotify Connect feature on your PS4 to sync up the two devices. In addition to logging you in, this feature will allow you to control your console's music playback with your smartphone or tablet.
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Spotify's PS4 interface looks familiar and fresh all at once. The app puts a selection of featured Browse playlists front and center, which are set to a soothing, soft aqua background. Playlists are presented in large, easy-to-navigate boxes, and, as on desktop and mobile, you can search by either genre or mood. You'll also find new PlayStation-centric playlists such as "Hip-Hop and Play," which were curated specifically with gaming in mind.
As with any version of Spotify, you can also pull up the search menu to find any specific artist or song within the service's 30-million-plus track library. While you can't yet share tracks to social media like you can on desktop and mobile, a Spotify rep said that the company is considering adding the feature in future updates.
If you're using Spotify's PS4 app in a party setting, you can scroll all the way down to bring up an attractive Cover Flow view, which hides the bulk of the app's UI and puts the album art of whatever you're jamming front and center. No matter how you're listening, skipping back and forth through your playlist is as simple as tapping the L1 and R1 shoulder buttons.
Both free and premium users can access Spotify on PlayStation, and all of your playlists and saved tracks will carry over. The benefits to having premium are the same on PS4 as they are on desktop: No ads, unlimited skips and offline playback.
Just as on desktop and mobile platforms, Spotify on PS4 will continue to run in the background no matter what you're doing. When testing the app, my music kept playing when I popped into the home menu, and also when I jumped into MLB: The Show 15. When you're in-game, you can skip songs or adjust track volume via PS4's Quick Menu.
Overall, I was pleased to find that Spotify is as intuitive on PS4 as it is everywhere else. Whether you want to make some tedious Destiny quests more lively with Drake, or bring some awkward lightheartedness to a brutal Bloodborne battle by jamming some Uptown Funk, the option to tap into Spotify's near-endless library while gaming is a welcomed one. If you're in the mood for music, look for the Spotify tab on your system's dashboard after downloading the latest software update.