How to Use The Spotify Web Player

Stream music from Spotify online without installing the desktop client

Young girl sitting in a park, listening music, and singing

Dragan Smiljkovic/Getty Images

If you want to reduce the number of apps you've installed on your PC, using the Spotify Web Player on your browser is a convenient solution. You'll notice very few differences between the web player and the app. And if you enjoy streaming free music online, the web player works even if you have a free Spotify account.

The Spotify Web Player is supported by Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Microsoft Edge, and Opera.

Access the Spotify Web Player

To access the Spotify Web Player, launch your favorite Internet browser and follow these steps:

  1. Go to the Spotify Browse page.

  2. Select Log In.

    If you don't have a Spotify account, select Sign Up and create a new account using either your email address or your Facebook account.

  3. Enter your username and password and select Login. Or, select Log In With Facebook.

Spotify Web Player Home

Once you've logged into Spotify's Web Player you'll see that it's a simple layout. The left pane lists your available options with the first four being ones that you'll use the most. These are Search, Home, Your Library, and Recently Played.

The Home page gives a broad look at all of the main options. Here you'll find:

  • Quick links at the top to Featured, Podcasts, Charts, Genres, New Releases, and Discover.
  • Suggested music based on your listening history.
  • Your recently played music.
  • "More Like" sections with specific artists related to your music tastes.
  • Themed suggestions based on the day of the week or special holidays.
  • Top music lists.
  • Recommended podcasts.

The Home page is customized based on your listening behavior, so you may see more or fewer options than listed above.

Spotify Search

If you know what you're looking for then choose this option. Once you do this, a text box displays at the top of the screen. Enter your search phrase to find the music you want. This can be an artist's name, the title of a song or album, a playlist, or even a music genre. Once you start typing, a list of results displays. Select a result from the list to start listening.

Screenshot of the search feature in the Spotify Web Player.

The results page is categorized into useful sections such as Artists, Albums, Playlists, Podcasts, Episodes, and more.

Your Spotify Library

The Your Library section of the Spotify Web Player displays an overview of all of the music you've listened to or saved. These are organized into Playlists, Songs, Albums, Artists, and Podcasts, with quick links at the top.

A screenshot of the Your Library area in the Spotify Web Browser.

If you want to customize your own playlist, select New Playlist in the upper right corner of the screen. Spotify recommends music based on your playlist title. Add music in the Create Playlist screen, or just add music as you browse Spotify and listen to music.

Discover New Music

Spotify is also a music recommendation service, and this option provides a great way to discover new music.

The results you see are suggestions that Spotify thinks you might like. These are based on various factors including the type of music you've been listening to. Tracks are also listed if they are currently popular and fit into the genres of music you listen to.

Stream Music with Spotify Web Player

There are a lot of features tucked deep into the web app. These are almost identical to the desktop app. To find these, just look for the More menu (the three dot icons) beside playlists or individual tracks.

Screenshot of listening to music in the Spotify Web Player.

When you open this menu for individual tracks, you'll find the following options:

  • Start Radio: Launches a special Spotify Web Player feature and plays songs related to the artist, playlist, or song you launched it from.
  • Save to Your Library: Stores the song in your library for easy access later.
  • Add to Queue: Lines up individual tracks in the order you want to listen to them.
  • Add to Playlist: Quickly saves tracks to any of your playlists.
  • Copy Song Link: Shares the track to friends on social media or in an email.

Play Music Using the Spotify Web Player Hotkeys

One thing you may miss when you switch to the Spotify Web Player is that many keyboard hotkeys that worked in the desktop app won't work in the web player. However, by installing the Spotify Web Player Hotkeys extension, you can still control song play with your keyboard with the following controls.

Chrome Spotify Web Player Hotkey extension hotkeys:

  • Pause or Play: Alt+Shift+P
  • Play Next Track: Alt+Shift+.
  • Play Previous Track: Alt+Shift+,
  • Save Track: Alt+Shift+F

Firefox Spotify Hotkeys addon hotkeys:

  • Pause or Play: Alt+Shift+P
  • Play Next Track: Alt+Shift+.
  • Play Previous Track: Alt+Shift+,
  • Shuffle: Alt+Shift+F
  • Repeat: Alt+Shift+R
  • Play Album: Alt+Shift+B

To access this feature, install the Chrome Spotify Web Player Hotkey extension, or the Spotify Hotkeys Firefox add-on.

Cast Your Music to Chromecast Devices

One of the biggest benefits of the desktop Spotify client is the ability to cast music to your Chromecast or any other devices you've enabled. The good news is that you don't lose this feature in the Spotify Web Player.

Screenshot of casting music from Spotify Web App

To cast your music:

  1. Select the devices icon at the lower right corner of the window.
  2. Choose the device family you want to cast to (like Google Cast).
  3. Select the output device in your home you want to cast to.

The only caveat here is that you'll need to use the Spotify app on your desktop or mobile device to add new Cast-capable devices to your Spotify account.

Other Benefits of the Spotify Web Player

If you aren't convinced yet that streaming music with the Spotify Web Player doesn't detract from your music listening experience, consider all of the extra benefits that this offers.

  • Spotify on Chromebook: If you own a Chromebook, the Spotify Web Player gives you access to all of the same Spotify features you'd expect from a full-featured client.
  • Browser Add-ons: If you search your browser extensions for Spotify, you'll find extra extensions that expand the web player's base functionality.
  • Portable: The Spotify Web Player is device independent. You can access your Spotify account from a web browser at a friend's house, at the library, or from any of your mobile devices.
  • Online Widgets: Websites are now embedding Spotify playlists directly into their pages. Use the web player to access these playlists instead of opening an additional application.
  • Save PC resources: The desktop Spotify client launches on start-up and uses system resources. Avoid the clutter and CPU usage by uninstalling the desktop client and using the web player instead.

Listening to music should be a hassle-free experience. With the features that the Spotify Web Player offers, there's really no reason to use the desktop client.