Spotify has expanded its Group Sessions feature to allow up to five people to listen to music or podcasts together, no matter how far apart they are. You’ll all need to be premium subscribers to use the feature. One of you can get the party started by creating a link from the Connect menu.
You’ll need to share that link with them through another service, however, which highlights just how underutilized Spotify’s social functions are. If you want to discuss whatever you’re listening to, you’ll have to do that elsewhere too.
The listening party host and guests can all control playback and skip tracks or episodes. They can select items in the queue and add more songs to it. Since the feature is all about simultaneous listening, whenever you take one of those actions, “it will immediately be reflected on all participant devices,” Spotify says.
The company introduced Group Sessions in May as a way for people who are in the same space to control playback of a shared queue. The feature is still in beta, so it’s likely to evolve over time. Amid social distancing measures to limit the spread of COVID-19, it could prove a fun, interactive way to hang out with your friends without being in the same physical space if you’re not in the mood to watch movies or play games together.