Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority
It’s the most wonderful time of the year. Sure, it’s the holiday season, but more importantly, it’s the time of year when Spotify Wrapped lands in my inbox. I get to revisit the songs, artists, and genres that got me through another trip around the sun, and it’s good to see whether I’m getting my money’s worth from my Spotify Premium subscription.
It’s the time of year when my sentimental nature gets to go, “I listened to Bleachers for how many hours?” The answer is 28.5 hours — if you’re curious. The arrival of Spotify Wrapped also makes my inner data nerd wonder why more services don’t follow Spotify’s lead. After all, Spotify Wrapped is guaranteed to trend on Twitter for a few days, and what brand doesn’t love a little engagement? With that in mind, here are a few of our favorite year-end roundups and a few more that we sure wish would add them.
Who nails the recap?
Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority
What I love about Spotify Wrapped is that it offers valuable insights into your year. Whether it was an artist finding their way into your Made For You mixes (hello, Briston Maroney) or learning the name of a genre you didn’t know existed (Aussietronica or Midwest emo, anyone?), there’s usually something you can glean from the interactive slideshow. However, Spotify isn’t the only platform that brings a solid end-of-year experience to the table — it’s not even the first to do so. Remember YouTube Rewind, anyone?
YouTube Rewind might be retired following a flop in 2018 and an underwhelming return in 2019, but there are lots of other apps with great recaps. Here are just a few of the best ones:
Strava & Fitbit
We’ve looped Strava’s Year in Sport with Fitbit, as both offer insights into your activity and wellness for the year. Strava digs into every activity you logged over the last 12 months, letting you see trends you might not have previously noticed. In 2021, it marked your total days active, top sports (running, in my case), and the total amount of time you spent active — including the time of day. From there, it dove further into your longest and hilliest activities and let you look back on some of the Kudos and achievements you hit during the year.
It’s a good way to follow your trends through the year — the times you stayed active and the times you took it easy — especially if you have a fitness-focused new year’s resolution. Strava’s Year in Sport usually lands in early December, and you can check it out through the middle of January.
Strava’s Year in Sport is Spotify Wrapped for adrenaline junkies.
On the other hand, Fitbit takes a more rounded approach, focusing on your health as a whole instead of just your active days. For example, Strava isn’t too worried about your sleep quality, but Fitbit dedicated an entire section of its 2021 recap to “Making sleep happen.” It offered your average hours of sleep, bedtime, wake-up time, and finally, an overall sleep score — which you could compare against the community. There were similar sections for activity and heart rate, though they didn’t go quite as in-depth as Strava.
Fitbit’s year in review isn’t one of the fastest, sometimes taking until January to arrive for all users, but it’s better late than never.
Apple Music‘s Replay is like Spotify Wrapped in the sense that Pepsi is like Coke — not quite as good, but you’ll take it if it’s the only option. Replay has been around since 2019 but only really shifted into high gear this year. It got a redesign for 2022, which feels a bit more polished and a bit less “graphic design is my passion,” but it’s still not as easy to share or as eye-catching as this year’s colorful Wrapped setup. Replay does cover your top artists, songs, and genres, as well as if you’re within an artist’s top 100 listeners — not as specific as the percentages offered by Wrapped, but better than nothing.
Apple Music Replay has already been released for 2022 if you want to check your listening habits.
Xbox & Nintendo
This year’s gaming statistics might not be through the roof like they were in the early days of the pandemic, but that doesn’t mean people stopped gaming. Nintendo offers a quick, easy look back at your year with the Switch, sticking to the basics like your most popular titles and genres and your most active times. Game a lot at night? There’s a good chance Nintendo (like Santa Claus) was watching. Last year’s Nintendo recap landed in mid-December, so we expect about the same this year.
Nintendo’s yearly recaps are a great reminder of the games you enjoyed and played the most.
Xbox also offered a much-loved Year in Gaming recap for a while, though it seems to be on a hiatus. It last appeared in 2019 and offered a look back at your favorite titles and genres — much like Nintendo does. There’s no way to know if the Year in Gaming will be back, but we sure wish we had the data from the height of the pandemic “for research purposes.”
Who should get in on the fun?
Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority
Strava’s Year in Sport is a pretty grown-up look at your activity for the year, and Spotify Wrapped has its quirks, but what about some end-of-year fun? There are, after all, countless apps that you’ve spent time with over the last 12 months, and each has a unique impression of your year. Some, like Twitter, could offer a (mostly) fun look at your year, while others, like Gmail or Tinder, might offer a dreary look at how much spam you had to shuffle through or how many connections you missed.
Here are just a few ideas of apps that could get in on the year-end recap game:
That’s right, bring back YouTube Rewind — just not how we left it. The 2018 video jumped the shark more than a little, and the glorified listicle from 2019 didn’t quite recapture hearts and minds. However, YouTube is the perfect platform for a Spotify Wrapped clone. YouTube could probably turn it into a Short, driving even more eyeballs to the feature. It would probably be pretty easy to look back at your most viewed creators and genres, and if YouTube can generate half the buzz that Wrapped does, it’s a big win on Twitter and Instagram. Mentioning those two…
Twitter & Instagram
I’m not usually in the business of helping Elon Musk save Twitter, but I’ll call this one a freebie. We’re all on Twitter for countless hours as it is, so why not give us a chance to look back at some of the best tweets and events of the year? There’s a new meme just about every week, but there’s nothing better than a little nostalgia — even if it’s from a few months ago. Further, Twitter could offer highlights from some of the year’s most important events, like the Winter Olympics, the war in Ukraine, and the World Cup in Qatar.
We all follow different accounts, and an easily sharable recap would be a good way to draw attention to smaller creatives — just don’t lock things behind Twitter Blue, please. You’re not getting my $8.
Why leave this to third parties? Twitter could show us the accounts we interact with the most or our most popular tweets.
Instagram, to me, is in the same boat. The algorithm (no matter how flawed it may be) already knows everything you look at, so why not dredge up hashtags and accounts that it thinks you should follow? Spotify Wrapped throws your favorites back at you in a sharable format; Instagram could probably achieve a similar feat, just without the funky personality test that Spotify ran this year.
Gboard (and other keyboards)
Alright, this last one is some true, honest fun. Why not give me a chance to revisit the emojis and gifs I’ve sent throughout the year? We have a curated library of custom emojis in our Android Authority Slack — thanks, Rita — but my inner data geek wants to know which ones are the most popular. Gboard does keep track of your recently used emojis, putting them at the top of your list, but I’d get a kick out of knowing why the turkey is number five on my list, wouldn’t you?
If we open it up to the Emoji Kitchen, all rules are off. Let me revisit my weirdest combinations, and I promise I’ll use them again.
Alright, there we go — a few services like Spotify Wrapped that nail the year-end recap, and a few more that we’d sure like to see. Have any other ideas? Let us know down below.
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