The Spotify app for Android was updated today, complete with new Near Field Communication (NFC) support for phones running Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. The announcement on the Spotify blog specifies that app users look for the option under the “Audio Effects” menu in the Settings menu. Spotify has not specified whether the NFC support still works for the newer Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, or whether that support will come in the future.
Supposedly, the feature will allow Spotify users to share music with other phones that have the same feature. It is unknown exactly what music the app will allow users to share. Spotify has subscription options that allow users to stream music of their choice. It seems unlikely that such music can be shared through the app, though it should at least allow users to share locally-stored music.
The mobile industry has been slowly adding support and developing the infrastructure for NFC technologies. While high-end Android-based smartphones have had support for NFC for some time now, Apple has yet to implement the technology into their iPhones. Samsung recently released programmable TecTiles NFC stickers to coincide with the launch of its Galaxy S III smartphone.
However, rumors earlier this year that the upcoming iPhone 5 would support NFC caused credit card companies and Walmart to invest heavily in building out digital wallet services. Though more recent rumors call for an NFC-less iPhone 5, this just goes to show how much market power even rumors about an iPhone can have.