Streaming music services differ in style, cost, quality and limits. These services are so popular that Apple Music has about 56 million paid users, and Spotify claims to have about 96 million. Apple Music offers a free trial for 3 months, and then costs $9.99 a month. Spotify’s most popular service costs $9.99 a month and allows subscribers unlimited ad-free music. But users can use the Spotify subscription service to enjoy unlimited search, unlimited playlists, and access to millions of songs.
If it’s the music you want, then you might be inclined to try out one or the other. But since these services are so similar, how do the differences impact your enjoyment?
For $9.99 a month, you get unlimited access to their catalogue of over 30 million songs, with no limits on skipping or higher quality audio. Plus, they are quick to add new, popular songs or releases.
The Spotify app offers you all the functionality of a traditional, web music service like Internet radio, RSS or music you choose from an Internet provider. You can create playlists to capture your moods, or find playlists from other users as well.
If you’re using the free version of Spotify, you will need to listen to intermittent ads between songs.
I’ve used Spotify for years, and I’ve had no complaints. Spotify has been the gold standard for years, blasting previous competitors like Pandora out of the water. But now there is a new competitor from a media behemoth: Apple Music.
It seems Apple might be the cream of the crop when it comes to streaming. Apple’s 50 million songs are enough to keep me happy and listening for years.
The Apple Music app is a compact and polished solution to one of the most common complaints heard from Apple users. The first thing you’ll notice when using the app is that it contains music you already have set as your playlists.
The list of playlists is organized into five categories, and you can subscribe to music specific channels, and download songs for listening offline. There is a “My Weekly” channel which presents a constantly flowing playlist of 40 songs that are from different genres.
Another welcome feature is the ability to create playlists offline via Apple Music’s seamless integration with the cloud. For example, I could create a playlist while I was on a train or bus, and then start enjoying the music when I am somewhere I am connected to the internet. I uploaded a 35 song playlist, and now it’s available to be listened to over wireless networks.
You can also create new playlists and share them with a group.
To add a playlist you can search for a specific artist or simply visit a artist’s profile to do it. When you find the artist or song you’d like to play you can do a similar search on your phone’s music player and then add it to your playlist.
When creating a playlist, you can also choose which songs to listen to within it.
Once you’ve added a playlist, you can instantly start streaming it using the iOS and macOS app. Both apps synch instantly and are available on their respective platforms.
Overall, Apple Music is a strong alternative to Spotify.
Which service do you prefer?