From Instagram’s latest integrations with SoundCloud and Shazam to the new Waze Audio Player, here are this week’s top tech headlines:

Instagram Announces Direct Integrations With SoundCloud and Shazam

Instagram continues to amp up its Stories feature with new direct partnerships with SoundCloud and Shazam.

  • SoundCloud: Whether you’re a fan scanning the new & hot charts to discover a track or an artist about to drop your next single, SoundCloud users can now seamlessly share their favorite music from the mobile app directly to their Instagram Stories. To do so, open the SoundCloud app on your mobile device and navigate to your song of choice. From there, tap the share icon at the bottom of the screen and select ‘Share to Instagram Stories’ from the menu. This new integration is a part of SoundCloud’s bigger push to build its reputation as the go-to platform for music discovery. The streaming service hopes to attract more users by tapping into Instagram Stories’ massive audience.
  • Shazam: Days after the SoundCloud announcement, Instagram unveiled it was adding another music-friendly integration to its arsenal, Shazam. Now, users can Shazam any song and then immediately share it on their Instagram Stories. Similar to the SoundCloud integration, once a new song is detected on Shazam, users can tap the share button and select Instagram from the menu. Shazam will then prompt users with suggested cover art that will link back to the song page on Shazam. This new partnership stems from Apple’s acquisition of the song-detecting app in September. In addition to integrating with Instagram, Apple has hinted that Shazam will be ad-free in the future.

Waze Syncs With Streaming Partners To Add An Audio Player

Waze unveiled a feature to make your commute a little less painful, introducing Waze Audio Player. The new audio player removes the hassle of swapping between apps to manage music, making driving safer and less stressful for users. It comes fully equipped with 8 premium audio streaming services including Spotify, Pandora, Deezer, iHeartRadio, NPR One, Scribd, Stitcher, and TuneIn. In addition to music, users can enjoy podcasts, audiobooks, radio, and news. Upon opening the app, Waze users will notice a pink music icon at the top right-hand corner of their screen. From there, users can select which connected streaming service they would like to use and manage it from there (please note: you must sync Waze and your 3rd audio streaming apps in order to use this new feature). The Waze Audio Player is currently in a limited beta, however, the app is looking to roll out this feature to all users by the end of the year.

Facebook Expands Music Initiative With New Features

Facebook is turning up the volume on its push to incorporate more music into the platform’s user experience with the addition of the following three features:

  • Music Stickers: Now users can add music stickers to their Facebook Stories and News Feed. The new music stickers will reflect the popular feature on Instagram Stories that launched earlier this year. In order to leverage the new sticker feature on Facebook, a user needs to upload a new photo or video and tap the ‘stickers’ icon from the menu bar. From there, users will be able to search for their favorite song and trim it accordingly. The post will feature the artist and song name to increase discoverability.
  • Lip Sync Live: After months of testing, Facebook announced it will be expanding its Lip Sync Live to all Pages. Lip Sync Live was initially rolled out in June but was only available in limited markets. Now creators from all over the world will be able to pair and share live-stream sing-alongs to their favorite songs. Additionally, the Lip Sync Live feature will include on-screen lyrics for a more karaoke-like experience. Facebook hopes that these enhancements will better connect creators with their fans and draw more users to utilize this feature.
  • Pin Top Music: Facebook has introduced a new music section on every profile where users can showcase what’s currently on their playlists. Visitors can tap the music section to listen to a portion of the song pinned. They will have the option to add the song to their own profile or be taken to the artist’s Facebook page. The first iteration of this feature allows users to manually pin songs to their profile, however, in the future Facebook is hinting at displaying what users are listening to in real time, similar to Spotify.

Integrating music throughout the platform has been a front-running initiative for Facebook since 2017. These new features could indicate where the platform is headed in 2019.

For more of technology’s top news, make sure you check back next week!