PSLS Help Desk – Spotify Music, PS4, and You
Last week’s PSLS Help Desk went into detail on how to create a foreign PSN account for all those crazy sales and exclusive demos and games that other regions may get. You could even go as far as to have PlayStation Plus on that account with the hope that the foreign Plus deals and games would be different in a region other than your own, though you will have to pay for it twice in that case. This week? We’re talking music.
Video games have some of the best soundtracks available. Most of my personal Spotify playlists are just music from video games, because I could listen to that Transistor soundtrack for the rest of my life and die happy. Sometimes though, you just want to listen to something other than the music in the game that you’re playing. Maybe some Overwatch while blasting the latest Green Day album? How about some bass thumping electronic music during a boss battle in The Witcher 3? I guess you could do that if you wanted something a little different, and we’re here to show you how.
Sign up for Spotify
Don’t worry, it’s free. Or at least there’s a free version of the sign up, and that’s all that PlayStation requires. The premium features give you additional mobile access and rights, as well as culling the ads that you’ll get every few songs, but the free version works just fine if you don’t want to pay for a subscription. For an easy and quick sign up, you can use Facebook to log in. If you prefer not to use the social network, you can create an account using an email.
You can either sign up from the PS4 directly or another device, though note that the PS4 doesn’t allow initial sign ups to be done using Facebook, so if that’s the route you want to take, you’ll need to use a computer or smart phone to do your first sign up. Remember that you don’t need to pay a dime to use PS4’s music features, so don’t worry about buyting a premium subscription if you don’t want to. Once you are all signed up for Spotify…
Link Spotify Account to PSN
On your PS4 go to your library and select Spotify from the apps section. You will be prompted to log in or sign up. The easiest way to log in is to link a mobile device with a Spotify account, and the PS4 details these steps very clearly at this stage. Basically you will need your mobile device (tablet, phone, etc.) linked to the same WiFi network as your PS4. Follow the steps on screen to link your Spotify account to your PS4, and you are good to go. It’s really that easy, just a couple of quick button presses to confirm the link.
If you don’t have a mobile device handy to easily link the account, press the X button, or right on the joystick to find an option to log in using your username and password, though I really recommend the mobile link for reasons that I will detail next.
Mobile Music Control
Spotify keeps playing music in the background, so you can listen to music while playing games (don’t forget to turn off the in-game music, or you are going to get a cacophony of sound). While Sony has made this easy to control using the latest update, putting a music option on the menu when you hold the PS button, we’ve got a little tip that makes it even easier, and you don’t have to leave your game at all.
If you’e got your mobile device and your PS4 Spotify accounts linked, the tablet or phone that you are using can actually control Spotify on the PS4. Find a song, album, or playlist and hit play. Without delay, whatever you choose will start playing from Spotify on the PS4. Want to skip a song, repeat that one, or add it to a playlist? You can do all of that using your phone as a remote control for Spotify as long as it is on the same WiFi network as the PS4. You can even control the volume using your phone’s volume keys.
You can also power your PS4 on (see our guide on setting this up) from rest mode using the spotify app. You’ll need to go to your Spotify settings on the PS4 by clicking on your profile picture in the upper right corner. Here you can allow your connected device to turn on the PS4. Make sure it’s checked, and the next time you want to listen to Spotify on your home sound system while doing some housework, just pull out your phone, click the bottom bar while playing a song, and tap your PS4 (the same way you linked your PS4 the first time). Your PS4 will power on and start Spotify. Trust me, it really helps the housework go a lot smoother if you’ve got a cool funk playlist to clean to.
Featured on PlayStation, Music for Games
Not only did the latest PS4 firmware bring a nifty new quick menu with easy access to Spotify, but it also brought recommended playlists for games. Hold down that PS button, select music, and view the playlists under “Featured on PlayStation” which will change depending on what game you are playing, ideally giving you appropriate music to listen to for each one. These appear to be curated playlists, as some less popular games don’t have this section available (I was really curious what kind of music they would recommend for Amnesia Collection!). These are a great way to discover some new music while also playing music appropriate to each particular game.
There you have it! There’s a lot of really cool stuff within Spotify to check out, such as playlists based on moods, genres, even the time of day! This is just a quick start guide to get you using Spotify efficiently alongside your gaming, along with a few tips and tricks to make sure you get the most out of your PS4 Spotify experience.