Unlocking exclusive access is a long-held promise of many NFT-based communities. And now Spotify is helping some of them realize that claim with token-gated playlists.
According to a series of tweets from Kingship, a metaverse band signed to Universal Music Group (UMG), the streaming company is testing playlists that can be unlocked through NFTs in select regions. As part of the pilot, Kingship released a special playlist that is only accessible to Kingship key card NFT holders.
The group posted a series of steps that involves linking a crypto wallet such as Metamask, Trust Wallet, Rainbow, Ledger Live, or Zerion to verify the NFT that unlocks the playlist. Kingship said this experience is currently only available to Android users in the US, UK, Germany, Australia and New Zealand.
The fact that iPhone users can’t access the feature isn’t surprising, given that Apple released some rules last October that limit the functionality of NFTs.
As first noted by Coindesk apart from Kingship, like other communities OverlordFluf and Kevin Rose’s Moonbirds also publish playlists that can be unlocked by their token holders.
Spotify confirmed this pilot by responding to Overload and Kingship’s tweets without disclosing further details. The company told AapkaDost in a statement that this is one of many tests on the platform.
“At Spotify, we routinely conduct a number of tests to improve our user experience. Some of these ultimately pave the way for our broader user experience, and others only serve as important lessons. We have no further news about future plans at this time,” said a Spotify spokesperson.
The announcement of the NFT-gated playlists pilot comes just before Spotify will hold its Stream On event on March 8. On Wednesday, Spotify also announced an experiment with an AI-powered DJ curating music for users.
Token-gated playlists aren’t Spotify’s first rodeo with NFTs. In May 2022, the company experimented with a profile feature that allowed artists to promote their digital art. Last year it published web3-related vacancies in the engineering and marketing departments.
But since then, global economic conditions have changed. Many companies, including Spotify, have laid off a lot of people and shelved several projects. In addition, crypto markets and companies are going through tough times. In the midst of all this, many companies have stopped talking about their web3 ambitions.
This pilot indicates that Spotify may have technology to offer more content, including songs, albums or podcasts that can be secured with tokens. Hopefully, the company will talk more about it at the upcoming event.