Spotify is more than a music streaming app. Podcasts, video distribution -- the company has tried everything to broaden its appeal and stop subscribers from defecting to Apple Music, Tidal and Google Play Music. Its latest effort is "Deconstructing," a new animated series by short-form video specialist ATTN:. The first episode, which premieres today, explains the history of EDM with some colorful characters and a documentary-style voiceover. It's a short, but informative overview of the genre, designed for mobile users who want a quick break from their favorite playlists.
In addition to Deconstructing, Spotify is working on 12 original shows right now. These include "Rush Hour," a light-hearted competition that challenges two hip-hop artists -- one legend and one rising star -- with remixing a well-known track in the back of a van. Once their driver has weaved through LA's traffic, they'll perform their new collaboration to a group of restless fans. There's also "Landmark," a documentary series with a complimentary longform podcast, and "Trading Playlists," which encourages celebrities to exchange their personal mixtapes for a day.
Video is a difficult medium for Spotify to crack. It's not known for that type of content, and is competing directly with services such as YouTube, Facebook and Snapchat. Apple is in a similar position -- its Music app was the exclusive home of Taylor Swift's 1989 tour video last year, and will soon host 16 new episodes of Carpool Karaoke. It's yet to be proven, however, that people actually want these original videos, or are willing to pay for them. That lack of clarity is why Spotify is still investing in its core music product, specifically with smart playlists such as Release Radar.