Online music streaming service Spotify believes that it can someday become one of the advertising powerhouses. But like its rivals in the advertising business, Google and Facebook, the company needs to collect and analyze lots of data on its customers. Spotify knows more than just what its customers are listening to, it also knows what they are doing and what you are going through.
The Spotify app can gather data from customers’ phones’ including accelerometer, gyroscope, and location data. This might be analyzed to find out if and when a customer works out or walks their dog.
And “Spotify (also) knows that you started playing Lizzo’s “Truth Hurts” at 23:03, listened to it for one minute, then searched for “break up” and listened to the entire four hours and 52 minutes of the “ANGRY BREAKUP PLAYLIST” without any pauses. Spotify might know to serve this listener ads about ice cream or (maybe a few weeks later) ads for online dating services.
Right now, Spotify is investing a lot in data science to figure out what all that data it collects can be used for. Privacy? Read more in “All the Ways Spotify Tracks You – and How to Stop It,” Wired.