Spotify is testing a way for users to stream their music through any Web browser as an alternative to the existing Spotify desktop app.
A beta version of Spotify's Web app started rolling out on Thursday, The Verge reports. The website reportedly looks similar to the desktop software and has many of the same features, including Spotify Radio, playlist editing, and a "What's New" section. Like the desktop version of Spotify, the Web version will offer free, ad-supported streaming for millions of songs on demand.
The bad news is that the Web app is only launching for a small number of users right now. In a statement to The Next Web, Spotify said it would have more details on Web player next year.
In the same statement, Spotify described its Web app as potentially "a great additional feature for times you can't play music through the desktop app, like at work or at a friend's house," so the idea isn't to replace the desktop app outright.
That makes sense, because some features, such as integration with the user's local music library, wouldn't necessarily work in a Web app. It's also not clear whether the website will support Spotify apps, but the feature doesn't appear anywhere in the screenshot obtained by The Verge.
Even so, a Web app would be a welcome new feature for Spotify, because it's not always practical to install the software on every computer where you might use the service. Most competing music services already have Web apps, including Rdio, Rhapsody, Mog, and Grooveshark, although Microsoft's new Xbox Music service does not. Hopefully, Spotify can open the beta to more willing participants soon.