In a dramatic announcement that promised to reveal "The future of Spotify," the company today unveiled Spotify Platform, a new way for third party developers to create apps that users can enjoy within the Spotify service.
Spotify Platform has some big music names participating as launch partners, including Billboard, Pitchfork, Rollingstone, Fuse, Last.fm, The Guardian, SongKick and more. The apps, which aren't available at the time of this writing but the company says are imminent, allow you to do things like get song lyrics, find out if a band is playing live, select music based on mood and read music reviews.
The new features emphasize Spotify's intentions to be more than just a music streaming service, and differentiate it from competitors like Rdio, Mog and Rhapsody. In fact, the company seems to be following in the footsteps of Facebook, which likewise opened to third party developers in 2008. The new Spotify also features a News Feed-like "activity feed" in the side panel, and Spotify CEO Daniel Ek even wore a Mark Zuckerberg-esque hoodie at today's announcement. Facebook's first president, Sean Parker, is an employee and advisor at Spotify.
You'll be able to access Spotify's new apps via the App Finder in the new "Apps" section of the program's left panel. There will be 16 in the first wave, with more to follow. Spotify says each app is tested and approved by the company before release.
Read more about today's announcement here.