Streaming music service Spotify has made an interesting move with a new version of their desktop application that can sync your playlists with iPods without having to go through iTunes. Just connect your iPod shuffle, iPod nano or iPod classic to a computer and watch it automagically appear in the Devices section in the Spotify sidebar to easily sync your iTunes music and playlists.
The Swedish startup wrote in a blog post that an updated version of their free app for iOS and Android devices provides the same functionality over your local WiFi network so you can wirelessly sync your MP3 playlists in Spotify from your computer to your phone. Plus, it’s now possible to wirelessly sync these playlists to an iPod touch.
Spotify also took the battle to Apple’s home turf with a new music download service that undercuts iTunes’ three-tier pricing model with 50p per track pricing in MP3 bundles. All the aforementioned goodies will be rolled out to all users, including those using an ad-supported free music streaming, as part of an automatic update. Check out iPod syncing in a video after the break.
As GigaOM noted, Spotify is not the first to offer iPod compatibility. DoubleTwist and Real Networks both offered a similar capability. But Spotify isn’t just another music startup, it’s probably the hottest music subscription service out there with millions of tracks and users who pay a monthly fee to stream their music on an unlimited basis to their computers and smartphones. With iPod compatibility, the long-awaited Spotify launch in the US could create a huge splash unless Apple exercises its dominant position in music to somehow block out a new competitor from entering the market. Meanwhile, you can use Spotify even if it’s not supported in your country with a little bit of trickery.