Navigate the Spotify Window - dummies

Navigate the Spotify Window

By Kim Gilmour

The Spotify screens look virtually the same for both the Mac and a PC, apart from the menu bar running at the top — on the Mac, this menu bar runs at the top of your desktop screen, rather than in the application window.

Spotify on a PC.

Spotify on a PC.
Spotify on a Mac.
Spotify on a Mac.

Open the software to see that the Spotify window consists of several main elements:

  • Search bar: Look up any track, artist, or album, and use advanced search parameters so that you can narrow down searches to parameters such as genre or record label.

  • Left sidebar: Here, you can access most of Spotify’s main functions, such as your music library and playlists.

  • Main pane: Where all the action takes place. Here, you can access the real heart of what Spotify is about: the music.

  • Menu bar: A strip across the top of the Spotify window that lets you access its many functions. Like with many programs, you may have several ways to perform a particular action, but you can be sure that the menu lets you access the most common ones.

  • The playback area: This section at the bottom of the Spotify screen lets you control the track you’re listening to.

  • People list: This right sidebar contains a list of all your Spotify contacts, including ones imported from the social networking site Facebook. Under this sidebar is a real-time news ticker (much like the one on Faceboook).

    • Rather than list all your Facebook contacts on the People List, you can choose to add only your favorite contacts to this view to make it easier to view the profiles of people who matter. These are displayed on the top half of the sidebar.

      To add a contact, click People on the main left sidebar. This displays ALL your Facebook contacts in the main pane (even the ones who don’t have Spotify yet; to narrow down the view to display only the people who are on Spotify, click the On Spotify link at the top of this main pane).

      Hover over a name and click the Add to Favorites button. Your contact is displayed on the People List. To view their profile page, click their name and, from the pop-up balloon that appears, click View Profile. (Any contact you’ve chosen to add to the people list is also listed here, not just your Facebook mates.)


    • The bottom half of the People List displays all your friends’ real-time listening activity (as well as activity of any Spotify user you’ve added as a contact who chooses to share their activty to Spotify Social).

      So, for example, “Kim Gilmour listened to Robots by Flight of the Conchords.” Click a notification to display a pop-up window displaying the artist, track, and album art your friend listened to. Click on any of these to start playing the track. Or click their name if you want to go straight to their profile page.

    • To hide/unhide the sidebar go to the menu bar and select View→People List.