Video & Audio|September 8, 2011| Author: Kim LaCapria|Tags: ,

Spotify Gets Pandora-Like Echofi Music-Matching Function

It seems that streaming music listeners fall into one of maybe two categories- the control freaks, who need to select every track that is played for them and prefer more micromanagable services like Grooveshark and the open-minded type that likes to be surprised by new songs or old favorites in their streaming queue, a feature mainly associated with Pandora.

Spotify- which has gone over quite well with most segments of the streaming population in the US since its July launch- can now satisfy fans of the latter with the addition of a track-matching service similar to the one that was the initial hook for Pandora users when the service launched 2005. Called Echofi, the service prompts users to enter an artist on an external site to be matched up with music they’re likely to enjoy based on the selection.

Although there are like and dislike options to mark undesirable suggestions, Echofi won’t remember your preferences betweens sessions, although that feature is reportedly in the works. The service also works off artist names and not song titles, giving it a little less matching-functionality than Pandora in that regard.

Andy Smith of Spotify spoke to Wired about Echofi:

“After Spotify launched in the U.S., a lot of people were lamenting the lack of artist radio (which has since been re-implemented) and comparing it directly — if unfairly — to Pandora.. Reading this, I couldn’t see a reason why you couldn’t give some extended control to Spotify.”

He continues:

“Playlists are great, but they are finite. The joy of set-and-forget systems is you can do just that. Radio is a constant background, with the occasional ‘I love this song!’ and ‘I hate this song!’ What I want to do is use those moments to drive the station into something where you’ll never experience the latter.”

Of Wired’s critique that the app tended to force Spotify to toggle forward, Smith commented there was little he could do about that, and suggested users perhaps “make the Spotify window really, really small.”