SoundCloud is shaking up its discovery experience by integrating a TikTok-style vertical feed, replete with 30-second song clips to entice its user base. The feature, initially tested in March, will soon be available on iOS and Android devices.
Users can listen to a 30-second preview and decide if they wish to hear the full track. A simple tap on the play button enables access to the complete song.
SoundCloud acquired Musiio in 2022 to power the new discovery feed. Musiio’s AI picks the most engaging 30 seconds of a song, although artists can also select their highlights manually.
SoundCloud’s new UI comes with shortcut buttons, making it easy to add tracks to playlists, libraries, and "Liked Tracks". The traditional “Following” feed remains accessible.
The vertical feed isn’t unique to SoundCloud. Spotify and ByteDance’s TikTok Music and Resso have also incorporated this style for their discovery feeds.
SoundCloud continues to support its 40 million creators with new features. Their 'First Fans' initiative, analytics tools, and fan-powered royalty program aim to connect artists more closely with their audiences.
Despite laying off 8% of its staff in May and 20% last August, the company seems determined to achieve profitability. The new discovery feed could attract more users, boosting ad and subscription revenues.
The move to a TikTok-style feed reflects the influence of short-form content in our digital age. For SoundCloud, it's another step in modernizing its platform, engaging its fan base, and competing effectively in the fast-evolving world of online music streaming. Whether it will significantly impact the app's profitability and user engagement remains to be seen.