Spotify buys AI startup Niland to develop its music personalization and recommendations

Cesar Mills
May 20, 2017

The company revealed on its blog that it has acquired French startup Niland, which describes itself as "a music technology company that provides music search & discovery engines based on deep learning & machine listening algorithms". In 2014, Spotify intern Sander Dieleman published a paper on how content-based music recommendation could be used by the service but Dieleman has since gone on to work at Google Deepmind.

In a statement Spotify said: "We are pleased to welcome Paris-based machine learning startup Niland to the Spotify family".

Niland's technology could help boost the track recommendation features at the center of Spotify's plans to stand out from Apple Music and other rivaling streaming services.

The popular music streaming service described Niland's "innovative approach to AI and machine learning based recommendation systems" as a flawless fit as it looks for new ways to connect users with new and relevant music.

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Spotify is focusing on personalization and recommendation technologies as integral parts of its service by offering tailored playlists to its members such as Release Radar and Discover Weekly, which separates the company from other online music streaming service providers.

One such area is artificial intelligence (AI), in order to make recommendations much more accurate, and Spotify hopes its latest acquisition will give it this power.

Niland will help the music streamer compete with competitors such as Apple Music and Pandora in providing the most relevant music suggestions to its 100 million plus users. Its paying members reached 50 million in March.

Spotify will be a direct listing on the NYSE when it goes public between the fourth quarter of 2017 and the first quarter of 2018. The Swedish music streaming company is valued at $13 billion, according to sources.

Other reports by GizPress

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