Spotify is one of the most popular music-streaming services available today. It is considered a “freemium service” allowing for free basic features with advertisements between songs plus a subscription feature to give you access to improved streaming quality, mp3 music download and other options to check out.
Alternatives are out there and some are even offering much better service along with the basics. The ones most similar to Spotify are Pandora and Deezer. Others that offer the ability to purchase, download and control music tracks are Google Play Music or Tidal. Following is a look at these and a short list of some of the more popular alternatives:
Powered by Music Genome Project and only available in the United States, Australia and New Zealand, this music streaming service focuses on recommending choices based on your genre preferences and favorite artists. By rating the musical selections picked by Pandora, you can create your own custom radio stations. The limit is 100 as opposed to Spotify’s 20. Pandora’s subscription rate is cheaper than Spotify’s by 50%. A web browser or downloading and installing application software will easily access the service on your personal computer or cell phone.
A large library of over 40 million music selections available on-demand, custom playlists and a function called radio stations to hear mixes of your favorites are some of the choices on Deezer. Options called “Flow” or “Hear This” create your own radio stations from your collections or recently played favorites. You will need to buy a subscription to play music offline and eliminate advertisements in between songs. Deezer assists musicians by linking music from festivals and gigs right to you. Lyrics are also displayed for those wanting to sing along with the right words!
Google Play Music
A free service from Google Play Music along with basics is storage of up to 50,000 of your own songs on the internet and can be accessed from anywhere. A monthly subscription service is available to stream music and create custom radio stations. One thing Spotify doesn’t provide that Google Play Music does is the ability to download music onto your personal computer.
The most recent addition to the alternatives, Tidal, was created by music artists like Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter to put more royalty money into the hands of the musicians and not the music labels and other middlemen. Having a library of 25 million songs, Tidal ranks as the first streaming service to offer high fidelity sound quality and high definition for over 75,000 music videos. Unique to Tidal are curated editorials about the music industry artfully prepared by music journalists.
Other alternatives keep popping up all the time. Noon Pacific sends a playlist once a week at noon Pacific Time with new music just for your taste. The Hype Machine pulls trend-setting tracks from music blogs to show you what’s popular now or in the next few weeks. Choices are out there if you are looking for something other than Spotify.