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You are here: Home / Digital Life / Is Spotify Building a Smart Speaker?
Look Out Apple: Is Spotify Building Its Own Smart Speaker?
Look Out Apple: Is Spotify Building Its Own Smart Speaker?
By Alex Hern Like this on Facebook Tweet this Link thison Linkedin Link this on Google Plus
Spotify is working on a line of "category defining" hardware products and is ready to start setting up the manufacturing process.

The streaming music company intends to create a hardware category "akin to Pebble Watch, Amazon Echo, and Snap Spectacles," according to job adverts posted over the past year.

One ad for a senior product manager, posted last April, called for an expert to "define the product requirements for internet connected hardware [and] the software that powers it."

Today, a trio of job adverts (spotted by industry site MusicAlly) have been posted, seeking an "operations manager," "senior project manager: hardware production," and "project manager: hardware production and engineering" for the hardware. The first of those adverts states that "Spotify is on its way [to] creating its first physical products and set-up an operational organization for manufacturing, supply chain, sales and marketing."

The new hire would manage the supply chain for the new product, suggesting the company is ready to begin the manufacturing process shortly. Spotify declined to comment on this story.

Historically, the streaming service has largely relied on third-parties to make it available to users. Its Spotify Connect feature allows products such as Amazon's Echo, Sony's PS4, and even BMW 7 series cars to directly pull streams from the cloud.

But it has also faced pressure from a few manufacturers who don't want to incorporate the Connect functionality into their products -- notably Apple, which doesn't support native Spotify playback on either the HomePod or Apple Watch. (Spotify users can still use the service with both devices through their phones, but with limited functionality.)

The absence of Spotify support on the HomePod was a sticking point for many critics, including the Guardian's Samuel Gibbs, who said in his review that "missing true Spotify support will be a deal killer for many."

Spotify is the most popular paid streaming music service in the world, even with Apple Music -- Apple's in-house competitor -- being the subject of heavy promotion from the world's largest company. According to the Wall Street Journal, Apple Music is forecasted to overtake Spotify for paid customers in June, but only in the US. With the rest of the world taken into account, Spotify will remain number one for some time.

© 2018 Guardian Web under contract with NewsEdge/Acquire Media. All rights reserved.

Image credit: Spotify; iStock/Artist's concept.

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