After a prolonged developmental period, Spotify's shared listening feature "Group Session" has launched into the beta testing phase. Arriving in the era of social distancing, the new feature is the latest offering to hit the platform specifically for premium subscribers.
With Group Session, those in close proximity can collectively control the music that plays. The shared queue allows participants to collaboratively develop a playlist as well as play, pause, and skip music in real time. It's this real time sharing component that makes Group Session an upgrade from existing shared features on Spotify such as collaborative playlists.
Group Session is a feature that has been in development since at least May of 2019, when the original code was discovered by Jane Manchun Wong and reported by TechCrunch. The discovery showed Spotify intended to use shared QR codes in order to connect users. The scannable means of connection has since made it into the final version of the feature along with link sharing. Once in the session, participants can stream the audio to a speaker of their choice.
Spotify's new Group Session feature is currently rolling out to all premium users and is said to support up to 100 users in a single listening session.