There has never been a better time to introduce yourself to paid music streaming services. Although Amazon Music Unlimited, Apple Music, and Spotify all offer similar features, each includes unique characteristics worth considering.
In this article, you'll learn more about Spotify, Apple Music, and Amazon Music, and discover how to subscribe to each of them. We'll also give you some invaluable advice to help you decide which one would be best for you to subscribe to personally.
Amazon Music Unlimited
Not to be confused with Amazon Music, Amazon Music Unlimited is a music streaming service that offers 50 million songs with new releases from today's most popular artists. Like other premium music streaming services, Amazon Music Unlimited allows you to listen to your favorite songs on-demand. You can also download songs to your devices for offline use.
Isn't This Amazon Prime Music?
If you're an Amazon Prime member, you already have access to over 2 million songs at no additional cost. You also receive access to 1,000 playlists and stations programmed by Amazon's music experts. A membership to Amazon Music Unlimited, by contrast, increases the number of songs available considerably. You also gain access to new genres and styles of music.
The best way to explain the difference between the two services (in addition to the library size) is how each handles new music releases. Amazon Music Unlimited will almost certainly have the latest album from your favorite artist on the first day of its release. Amazon Prime Music probably won't.
Not surprisingly, Amazon Music Unlimited works with Amazon Alexa voice controls, found on devices such as the Echo, Dot, and Tap. For example, you can say "Alexa, play the Bird Box soundtrack" or "Alexa, play the latest album by JoJo." You can also try commands like "Alexa, play the most popular rock from the 80s" or "Alexa, play music for a dinner party."
Amazon Music Unlimited Availability
Amazon Music Unlimited is available on multiple platforms, including iOS, Android, macOS, Windows, Fire TV, Fire tablets, and on the web. Additionally, it works with home entertainment products such as Sonos, Roku, and Bose. The service is also available in cars from Ford, BMW, and Mini.
At the time of this writing, Amazon Music Unlimited is only available in the United States, United Kingdom, France, Germany, Austria, Spain, and Japan.
Amazon Prime members can subscribe to Amazon Music Unlimited for $7.99/month, which is $2 off the standard monthly price. You can save a little extra by paying $79/year upfront. Amazon also offers a family plan for $14.99/month or $149.99/year. With the family plan, you and your family can stream music on up to six devices at the same time.
If you only want to stream music from your Amazon Alexa device, the company offers a low-cost option for $3.99/month for each device.
New users can try Amazon Music Unlimited free for 30 days. If you check it out, see our guide to managing your Amazon music playlists.
First launched in June 2015, Apple Music provides all of the on-demand music you'll ever need. As with Spotify, there are also playlists, and here's how to get started using Apple Music playlists. As with Amazon Music Unlimited, Apple Music allows you to download music for offline use as long as you continue being a subscriber.
When it first launched, Apple Music placed great emphasis on the service's Beats 1 internet radio station and a blog platform for artists called Connect. Offering live broadcasts 24 hours a day, the Beats 1 station features DJ Zane Lowe, among others, and continues to this day. Connect was discontinued at the end of 2018, although artists can stillshare their music and playlists with friends and followers.
In late 2016, Apple Music began rolling out personalized music playlists. Initially, these included a "New Music Mix" and "Favorite Mix." The former is similar to Spotify's popular "Discover Weekly" playlist. There's also a "Chill Mix" and "Friends Mix." Each offers music based on listening history. You can also watch music videos on Apple Music.
Apple Music Availability
Apple Music is available across all of Apple key products, including iOS devices, Apple TV, and Apple Watch. It's also available through iTunes on Mac/PC and Android devices. You can also stream Apple Music through CarPlay and Sonos systems and onAmazon Echo products.
Apple Music is available in over 100 countries around the world. If you're reading this article, it's likely Apple Music is available where you live.
An individual Apple Music plan costs $9.99/month or $99.99/year. A family plan, which is good for up to six people, is priced at $14.99/month. Student plans are available at $4.99/month.
New subscribers can try Apple Music free for three months, while Verizon Wireless customers can claim six months for free.
If you're staying away from Apple Music simply because it's Apple or you don't own and iOS device, check out these things you should never say to an iPhone user.
Unlike Apple Music, Spotify offers a free plan that includes ads. Though highly restrictive, this allows would-be subscribers to experience Spotify without paying a dime. However, this type of availability seems to be working, as there are currently 180 million Spotify total users worldwide as of mid-2018.
Like the other two services on this list, Spotify Premium gives you the ability to play any song, both on-demand and offline. Where Spotify Premium excels is with its "Discover Weekly" feature, which suggests music based on your music preferences and listening history. You also have access to custom playlists, which are put together by theme, decades, and genre. And remember, you can import playlists to Spotify as well.
Even better, you can scrobble your Spotify music with Last.FM to get recommendations based on your tastes.
You can find Spotify nearly everywhere, including iOS, Android, Amazon devices, Samsung devices, Roku, PlayStation, Sonos, on the web, and more.
First introduced in Sweden in 2006, the Spotify Premium service is available in all corners of the world, including most of Europe, the Americas, and parts of Asia.
Spotify Premium is available for $9.99/month for an individual subscription and $14.99/month for a family plan. Students can purchase a subscription for $4.99/month.New subscribers can try Spotify Premium free for 30 days.
Which Music Streaming Service Is Best?
In general terms, Amazon Music Unlimited, Apple Music, and Spotify Premium offer the same underlying features. These include on-demand music and the ability to download songs for offline listening. From there, each provides unique extras worth considering.
Amazon Music Unlimited is an excellent choice for Amazon Prime subscribers because of the extra discount it provides. Hardcore Amazon Alexa users can also benefit from selecting this service.
By contrast, if your world revolves around Apple products, Apple Music is probably the one for you. One of the most significant advantages of going this route is that Apple Music automatically merges your streaming content with what you've purchased from iTunes. This featureis a big deal if you're looking to expand your current library across multiple devices.
Spotify Premium, meanwhile, is the best service for music discovery. This fact is an important point to consider if you're the type of person that appreciates finding new music and artists. And be sure to check out these Spotify sites for discovering new tunes and playlists.
As you can see, all three premium music streaming services have their advantages. You should pick the best music streaming service for you. Our advice: take advantage of the free trials to determine which service is right for you! And no matter which service you decide to go with, be sure to buy a great pair of wireless earbuds for the best listening experience!
Want more streaming options to consider? Check out our article on Spotify vs. YouTube Music, as well as Spotify vs. Tidal.
Is Amazon music just as good as Apple Music? ›
Verdict. Apple Music and Amazon Music both offer high-resolution lossless audio. So, ultimately, the choice between the two boils down to whatever works for your current setup. Either way, both apps will deliver amazing audio quality with the right equipment.What is the #1 music app? ›
|App App Name||Change Daily change of Usage Rank.|
|1||Spotify: Music and Podcasts||=|
|2||Pandora - Music & Podcasts||=|
|3||Amazon Music: Songs & Podcasts||=|
|4||SoundCloud: Play Music & Songs||=|
Amazon Music's HD audio feature also gives it an advantage over Spotify. At the same price point of $9.99, you can get audiophile-level quality with an Unlimited plan. Given that you have the right audio gear to maximize the HD and Ultra HD settings, you'll undoubtedly get more out of Amazon Music.Does Apple Music actually sound better than Spotify? ›
Better overall sound quality
Even if you're not part of the AirPods army, Apple Music has another big advantage over Spotify: lossless and high-resolution audio.
We found Tidal to be the best music streaming platform for serious listeners due to top-tier audio quality and higher royalty payouts for music artists. The best music streaming services not only keep listeners in mind but also consider artist fairness, and Tidal manages to do both.Is Spotify better than Apple Music 2022? ›
Apple Music and Spotify are both excellent streaming services. Spotify definitely comes out on top in most categories, but if you have a lot of local files in your library or want to listen in Dolby Atmos or Lossless audio quality, Apple Music is still the better option for you.What is the most used music app in in 2022? ›
In September 2022, Spotify was the most-downloaded music and audio app in the Google Play Store worldwide, as the streaming service generated almost 12 million downloads from Android users. Shazam was the second-most popular music and audio app with approximately 5.44 million downloads from global Android users.What music app does everyone use? ›
Probably the best-known music streaming app, Spotify is a massive force in the streaming industry, boasting more than 406 million subscribers and offering access to 80 million tracks from almost any artist you can think of.
The service is a good place to stream music and podcasts, but the service no longer offers on-demand listening. Music Prime is clearly a stepping stone to the more robust Amazon Music Unlimited, as it lacks the premium service's on-demand functionality, Hi-Res Audio streams, and spatial audio.Is it worth having Amazon music? ›
Amazon Music Unlimited doesn't have all the bells and whistles of some competing services—it lacks live radio, for example, and a recent price-hike has lessened the value for Prime members—but it offers more than 90 million songs, HD Audio, impressive Amazon device compatibility, and a deep podcast well.
What music is better than Spotify? ›
Audio streaming quality is where Apple Music completely supersedes Spotify. Because of its recent update, Apple Music now offers lossless audio quality of up to 24-bit/192 kHz as well as spatial audio with Dolby Atmos.Is Apple Music worth the money? ›
While there are multiple streaming services to pick from, there's no doubt that Apple Music is worth considering. If you own an Apple device, and you're actively looking to get a subscription for your music needs, we'd recommend giving Apple Music a try.Why is Spotify the best? ›
Spotify offers everything that all of its music streaming app competitors have and more. Their bread and butter is a library of millions of songs (over 40 million) and a massive number of playlists created by both mobile app users and Spotify's own algorithm system.What is the #1 streaming service? ›
|Netflix||Online Streaming of Original and Old Content||5/5|
|Sling TV||Affordable and Simple Content Streaming||3.5/5|
|Apple TV +||Streaming Original Content on Apple Devices, Roku, Fire TV and more.||3.5/5|
|Hulu TV Live Plus||65 + channels with Hulu Streaming library||4.5/5|
Spotify is popular because it makes streaming music so incredibly easy. You don't even have to pay. The free tier is a genius tactic for reeling users in – then, once you're sick of the adverts that make it free in the first place and long for the freedom of unlimited skips, hitting subscribe is easy.Is Spotify good in 2022? ›
Spotify Premium has been one of the most popular music streaming services around for years. It's great for discovering new music and podcasts. Its Discover Weekly playlist automatically based on your listening habits is eerily good at finding new music you'll love.Which app is better for listening songs? ›
Spotify. Spotify isn't just one of the most popular subscription music apps, it's also one of the best ways to stream music for free.Which music app has the biggest library? ›
Which streaming services have the most number of tracks as of October 2022? Apple Music just hit a huge milestone at 100 million songs. While they claim “More music than any other platform” looking at other platforms, we're not sure whether they checked all of the other platforms.What app do most musicians use? ›
- Garage Band.
- iMachine 2.
- Korg Gadget 2.
- FL Studio Mobile.
- Akai iMPC Pro.
- Model 15 Moog Modular Synthesizer.
- The Metronome by Soundbrenner.
Top global apps by consumer spend, Q1 2022
Facebook still leads the world in monthly active users, with all four of the top four apps, followed by TikTok, Amazon, Twitter, and others.
What platform is most used for music? ›
Music streaming marketshare
Spotify is the platform for about a third of all music streaming listeners worldwide, with Apple Music in second place.
Spotify Premium vs Amazon Music Unlimited
For example, Amazon Music Unlimited's library has 90 million songs, rather than the two million on the basic Amazon Music Prime library. Spotify has a similar offering but slightly less, with over 80 million songs on offer. Bear in mind, both outlets also offer podcasts, too.
What streaming quality does Amazon Music Unlimited support? Amazon Music Unlimited has two types of high-quality streaming: high definition (HD) and Ultra HD, both of which are encoded by the lossless FLAC codec. There are also standard quality tracks available of up to 320 kbps with lossy compression.Is Amazon Prime still worth having? ›
Yes, Amazon Prime is worth it even at $139 a year
For the $139 yearly or $14.99 monthly fee, Prime members earn a ton of benefits. These include free one-day delivery, two-hour grocery delivery, premium streaming services like Prime Video and Prime Music, and an unbelievable amount of extra discounts and coupons.
It's ad-free, has on-demand access to nearly two million songs (and counting), and is extremely popular because existing Prime members view it as a free benefit. There's an actually-free membership as well, Amazon Music Free, that operates similarly to radio listening.Is Amazon Music completely free? ›
To stream music for free on Amazon, all you have to do is go to music.amazon.com or use the Amazon Music app. There is no membership payment required.Is Amazon Music always free? ›
Prime members can join Amazon Music Unlimited for only $8.99/month for a monthly subscription or $89/year for an annual subscription. Non-Prime customers pay $9.99/month.What is the best way to listen to music? ›
An avid music listener should weigh sound quality, selection, price and discoverability. The three best options today are vinyl records, CDs and streaming services, each of which comes with different pros and cons.What are the weaknesses of Apple Music? ›
Weakness: Price – Apple Music is $10 a month, the same as independent competitors like Spotify. Apple couldn't convince the record labels to let it charge less, but it's real failure could be the refusal to subsidize the subscription fee. At the end of the day, Apple doesn't make money on content a few bucks at a time.Why is Apple Music so expensive? ›
Apple said the increase in Apple Music subscription price was due to increased licensing costs. The company said artists and songwriters will earn more per stream as a result of the pricing tier changes.
Why do people prefer Spotify over Apple Music? ›
Simply put, Spotify is universal, user-friendly and a lot less buggy than Apple's streaming service. Spotify is available on PC/Mac, Android, Linux, iOS, etc. while Apple Music mostly works well on iDevices and PC/Mac only. The Android version can be super buggy at times.Who is number 1 at Spotify? ›
|1||Drake Up to date data||51,786,368,950|
|2||Bad Bunny Up to date data||47,210,744,274|
|3||Ed Sheeran 1 day(s) old data||39,045,377,019|
|4||The Weeknd 1 day(s) old data||36,180,262,688|
|1. Ed Sheeran – Shape of You||3223393957|
|2. The Weeknd – Blinding Lights||3128061347|
|3. Tones And I – Dance Monkey||2642704868|
|4. Post Malone, 21 Savage – rockstar||2489462596|
The big difference between Amazon Music and Apple Music is that you just need to pay $3.99 per month for use on one Echo device (Echo Show, Echo Look, Echo Dot, Echo Spot, Echo Plus, or Amazon Tap) powered by Amazon's own Alexa AI assistant.Is it worth having Amazon Music? ›
Amazon Music Unlimited doesn't have all the bells and whistles of some competing services—it lacks live radio, for example, and a recent price-hike has lessened the value for Prime members—but it offers more than 90 million songs, HD Audio, impressive Amazon device compatibility, and a deep podcast well.What are the benefits of having Amazon Music? ›
Amazon Music for Prime Members provides Prime members with access to 100 million songs ad-free, the largest catalogue of ad-free top podcasts, and thousands of playlists and stations - all included with Prime at no additional cost for members in the US and Puerto Rico.Does Apple Music or Amazon Music have more songs? ›
The Apple Music and Amazon Music Unlimited plans give you access to a huge catalog of content when you sign up. Both services boast catalogs with 50 million songs, but Apple goes the extra mile to secure artist exclusives including new releases, live performances and concert videos.Does Apple Music have a limit? ›
100K song limit is definitive/can't listen to more than 100K
Apple Music has a limit of 100K songs since you need your iCloud library to sync, add to playlists, etc. Apple Music states that you can listen to millions of songs, but you can't! Well, only if you do not add anything to your iCloud Library or playlists.
How many songs are on Spotify and Apple Music? Spotify gives you access to over 80 million tracks, while Apple Music allows users to stream over 90 million songs. The difference is that Apple Music often gives listeners access to exclusive perks and original content such as special video content.Why does Amazon Music take songs away? ›
Here are some reasons Amazon Music Unlimited titles no longer show as available: The titles were removed from the Amazon Music Unlimited catalog. Your Amazon Music Unlimited subscription expired or was canceled. Your Amazon Music Unlimited subscription was downgraded to Amazon Music Unlimited Single-Device Plan.
Can you keep music from Amazon Music? ›
Downloaded Amazon Music Unlimited and All-Access Playlist songs are only accessible within the Amazon Music app. It is not possible to export songs for use on other apps and devices. You can't copy downloaded Amazon Music Unlimited and All-Access Playlist songs onto CDs or other external storage.Can you listen to Amazon Music offline? ›
If you have an Amazon Prime or Amazon Music Unlimited subscription, you can download your favorite songs and playlists to your iPhone or Android devices for offline listening.