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What’s The Best Steaming Music Service To Listen to For Current Hits?
Gone are the days of changing each album in your car to listen to your music. With streaming music services, you can listen to music anywhere at any time.
Streaming music services have become the norm for listening to music. In 2014 alone streaming music skyrocketed by 54%. With streaming music services, you can listen to music basically anywhere at any time.
When selecting a streaming service, ask yourself some questions:
- Does it fit my budget?
- Does it already fit seamlessly with my lifestyle?
- How do I listen – app or web?
- Is it easy to use?
- does it work with home assistants like Google Assistant, Alexa, or Home Pod?
- How many songs are in the library?
- How does each streaming music service compare with free options?
- Do they offer a family plan for multiple users?
- What makes them stand out?
Here are some of the most popular choices to consider for streaming your music.
The multi-billion dollar company, Amazon, is now a household name, and so it’s no wonder they offer a streaming music service.
Amazon offers two options for streaming music, Unlimited Music, and Prime music.
Start with a free 30-day trial or for Prime members to test the waters. If you like it, sign up to be a Prime member. Amazon Prime is $13 a month or $119 a year, with Prime Music included.
Amazon Music Unlimited is $8 a month for Prime members and $10 a month for non-Prime members. For $4 a month, stream it on one device like Echo or Fire TV. If you’re already a prime member, this makes Amazon the cheapest music streaming service.
Add a family plan for $15 a month and begin streaming for multiple family members.
Amazon Music Unlimited supplies you with 40 million songs, while Prime offers a couple million. Both Unlimited and Prime are ad-free and on-demand making Amazon one of the best streaming music services. Amazon is an ideal choice for music lovers already taking advantage of Amazon Prime. They offer playlists, (already built or build your own) and are compatible with the Amazon home device, Alexa.
A bonus feature with Amazon is being able to view the lyrics while you listen to a song.
Listen to Amazon music on your desktop with Windows or Mac, iOs, and Android.
With 170 million users, Spotify is one of the most popular music streaming services and for a good reason. The attraction of Spotify is its versatility; you can play it anywhere on any smart device with a speaker, so TV’s, game consoles, desktops, smartphones and even Sonos One and Bose speakers. It’s used with Google Assistant and Alexa.
Spotify creates targeted playlists – things like working out or heading to work. You can sync songs you already own, access Podcasts and add Hulu (for an extra $3 a month).
This music streaming service is free (you’ll see those ads, though!) or pay for ad-free music with Spotify Premium at $10 a month and $15 a month for a family plan. The free plan grants you Spotify’s 40 million songs, but you can only skip six songs per day.
A student plan is 50% off.
Spotify is generally used with Mac or Windows, Android or iOS, and other devices.
Apple Music is one of the best-known names in streaming music services, especially with 40 million users. At almost 50 million songs and $10 a month or $15 for a family plan, Apple Music is a solid competitor in the music streaming industry. A student plan is available for $5 a month. There is no free option, except for the three-month free trial.
Beats 1 is their radio programming and offers a constant stream of music. Playlists are consistently churned out and shown to you based on your previous selections. Occasionally, Apple Music releases exclusive content from some of music’s most prominent artists. It’s compatible with Homepod, Siri (“Siri, play Drake.”), and Apple Watch. Avid Mac users will find apple music fits flawlessly within their use.
Apple Music is one of the best ways to stay on top of fresh content.
Like Amazon, Apple Music allows you to
For $25 a month, store all your existing music in your iCloud with a feature called iMatch. There’s no limit to how many songs you can save.
Pandora has cemented itself in the music-streaming industry as one of the first companies to appear on the landscape. And one of the more economical choices at $5 a month, without ads, and only skipping a certain number of songs per day. Bump the service up to $10 a month to chose from their library of 40 million songs, or choose a family plan for $15 a month.
Pandora’s main difference lies in that it offers a live-radio experience, practically doing the work for you. Tell Pandora what you want to hear by choosing an artist or genre, and it makes selections for you, unlike other streaming devices where you can make specific searches. It also pairs with Alexa or Google Assistant.
If you like a steady stream of music don’t mind not choosing your specific content, try Pandora.
Learn more about Pandora and Spotify.
YouTube Music and YouTube Premium
Youtube boasts a hefty 1.5 billion users and is arguably one of the largest platforms for not only streaming video but music content. YouTube Music is free with ad interruptions or $10 per month for the ad-free YouTube Music premium. The advantage of music premium is downloading music and videos without cellular or Wifi service.
You can save your favorite songs in your library and see new hits with a feature called Hotlist. You find music by searching for your favorite songs instead of choosing them from a library.
YouTube Premium (previously known as YouTubeRed), is $12 a month and provides you with YouTube originals as well as the benefits of YouTube music premium.
Google Play Music
Google Play Music holds hand with YouTube. Google Play Music is new on the streaming music scene, with its reveal in 2013.
Google Play Music main stand-out is a feature that allows you to add songs (up to 50,000!) from your CD’S or songs downloaded from the internet, known as your digital locker. This saves you space on your device.
Chose the free option (NOT free of ads!); however, you’re limited to your music from your digital locker and their radio stations. At $10 a month, you can have on-demand, with access to YouTube Music Premium as well. Up your membership with a family plan for $15 a month for other family members to use.
They supply playlist recommendations and a library of about 40 million songs.
Google Play Music is available on your desktop (Mac and Windows), Android or iOs.
Tidal (owned by Jay-Z), is similar to the above streaming devices with a couple of exceptions. With a Tidal membership,you’re able to view live stream concerts, other videos, discover new and exclusive content from musicians and artists and acquire over 50 millions songs. Another stand-out is its sound – the clarity is pristine, though you pay for it.
Sign up for a free 30-day trial or $10 a month for Premium, $20 for HiFi (the crystal-clear sound) or $15 for Premium family plan and $30 for HiFi family plan. Use Tidal on your desktop with Mac or Windows, iOS or Android, and other smart speakers.
Tidal does not pair with any home assistants. Listen to Tidal on the web (Mac or Windows), or Android or iOS.
Continuing in the vein of a low-cost subscription: free with ads, $10 a month for no ads and access to the on-demand library, and $4 a month for no ads. There is no family plan.
Functionality is similar to Pandora (let the service choose the songs for you), with the exception of being able to listen to ESPN Live and ABC News and hundreds of other stations.
You can listen to Slacker Radio on your desktop (Mac or Windows), or Android and iOS.
Best Free Streaming Servies
Though the above music streaming services have free options, some are completely free. This freedom comes with a cost, as they lack the breadth of features and options of paid subscriptions, and may not be up to date on the latest content.
Customize your music on iHeartRadio with 18 million songs, and a plethora of artists and radio programs. Us with Android, iOs, Windows, and Mac, and even XBox.
MixCloud provides music mixes, radio shows, and playlists of over 3 millions songs. Download the app for free and use it with Android and iOS.
Jango is completely free and offers you ways to create lists with music you enjoy or choose from already-created playlists. Tap into other users who enjoy the same music selections you do and discover new music! With no commercials, download the app on your phone (Android or iOS) or listen to it on the web.
Choose from 50 different genres of music, playlists, and rate music. An interesting feature of AccuRadio is being able to ‘ban’ the music you don’t like, and getting unlimited skips so you can enjoy the music you want.
Music streaming has taken the world by storm and isn’t backing down now. Whether you want to stay updated on the latest music or just want easy listening, there’s a music streaming service to meet your needs.
Compare and contrast the above services, ask yourself some questions, and choose which music streaming service fits best into your life.
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