In context: Brain-teasing word guessing game Wordle is popular the world over for its bite-sized, easy-to-learn mechanics. It's so popular, in fact, that it has spawned plenty of knock-offs, competitors, and spiritual successors. One such game is "Heardle," a Wordle-like trivia game where users are asked to name a given song after only hearing a few seconds of the intro.
Like its word-based cousin, Heardle gives players a limited number of attempts to guess a song -- six in total -- before they'll be locked out of guessing for the day. If you're completely stumped, you can choose to skip ahead a bit in the tune, though this occupies one of your guessing slots. It's an addictive formula, and after trying it briefly myself (and winning), I'm already anxiously waiting for tomorrow's Heardle.
So, why are we discussing Heardle today? Moving forward, it will no longer be an independent game: Spotify is acquiring the popular music-based trivia title, much like The New York Times acquired Wordle.
Spotify promises to keep Heardle free for everyone, without making any changes to its "look and feel" -- save for one. After you play Heardle for the day and either succeed or fail, you'll be able to listen to go and listen to the full song on Spotify.
The company hopes this move will drive additional users to its site and make Heardle a good tool for music discovery. The idea here is that you'll like the tune you hear during a Heardle game, and switch over to Spotify's app afterward to listen to the entire thing. You might then get recommended some other songs, and before you know it, you've gone down the musical rabbit hole and added a half-dozen tunes to your favorite playlist.
As part of this acquisition, Spotify will be localizing and expanding Heardle's availability to additional regions outside of the US, UK, Ireland, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. The company has plans for "more deeply" integrating Heardle with Spotify down the line, but it hasn't shared any specifics.