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Spotify Alternatives: 8 Best Music Apps/Sites Like Spotify in 2024 (Pros & Cons)

Spotify Alternatives: 8 Best Music Apps/Sites Like Spotify in 2024 (Pros & Cons)

    If you enjoy streaming music, chances are you have already heard of Spotify.Spotify is, by far, one of the most popular music apps out there, and like other major subscription-based streaming services, like Apple Music or Tidal, it has a free tier, but there are others.While there is a free version,it still has a few limitations that are a turnoff for people seeking free music streaming services. Among these limitations are the inability to shuffle music, lack of unlimited skipping of songs, no high-res audio, no lyrics in its apps, and a limited number of music videos.

    With so many new music streaming services popping up in recent years, it’s about time you considered some paid and free Spotify alternatives.So what music app is better than Spotify?Is there a better alternative to Spotify?What's a good replacement for Spotify?What app is like Spotify but free?In this article we have researched the most popular apps like Spotify so that you can have different options when looking for music streaming apps and sites.These services are available on numerous platforms but bear in mind that not all are available in every country worldwide.

Cover Photo:Siddharth Bhogra on unsplash.com

1.YouTube Music

#The Best Spotify Alternative

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Source:apps.apple.com

YouTube Music is the successor to Google Play Music,。YouTube Music exploded in popularity to become one of the biggest free music platforms on the planet. And now, YouTube Music has earned some serious street cred with its better-than-expected subscriber numbers.YouTube Music creates mixtapes based on your previous music preferences on YouTube. If you are a regular user of YouTube, they already know everything about your taste in music.

YouTube Music, is actually a competitor that could dethrone the world’s leading streaming service.In contrast to Spotify, the app allows you to search and play any individual song with unlimited skips.Also included is a wide variety of original music videos and the inclusion of other songs that you probably won’t find on Spotify.Along with the usual music streaming, you’ll find additional stuff like parodies and cover songs. It’s probably the only service with more songs to offer than Spotify.

Beyond the content, there are two main advantages: you can have your music offline or watch videos without having to be connected to WiFi or mobile data. In addition, you can have YouTube videos in the background and continue using other applications without the music being cut until you decide. 

ProsCons
  • Expansive video options,over 40 million tracks

  • Access to all of YouTube

  • Download content for offline playback

  • Retains Google Play Music's music locker system: You can transfer existing songs from the old service, plus upload new ones in YouTube Music

  • Student rates available

  • Subscribing to artists through the app is separate from regular YouTube account subscirptions

  • YouTube account subscirptions

  • A true bargain when included with an ad-free YouTube Premium subscription

  • Freemium version has ads

  • No lossless streaming

  • Clunky interface

  • Audio quality

  • Confusing to understand their different services

  • Can be very difficult to search for specific music

Price:

  • 1 month free trial with Ads.

  • Music Premium: $9.99/mo, and you can get rid of the ads and the pauses and lets you download your music. There is also a $99.99 annual plan. If you subscribe to YouTube Premium ($11.99/mo), YouTube Music is included.

  • Budget Plans: The Family plan ($14.99/mo) lets you add up to five other household family members. The Student Plan ($4.99/mo) gives you Premium service with verification of eligibility.

App Download: iOS    Android

2.Deezer 

#The Spotify Twin

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Source:apps.apple.com

Deezer is another one of those giants in the audio streaming platform category. It’s always Spotify, Apple Music, and Deezer. Deezer is based in France and was also founded in 2007.Deezer is available in 189 countries, covering almost every country on the planet. They are far ahead of their competitors in terms of having their services in more than a handful of countries.If you’re in a country where you can’t get Spotify or just looking for a great alternative, then you’ll definitely want to take a look at Deezer.

Deezer is a great alternative to Spotify that offers more than 70 million tracks that you can listen to for free. Deezer‘s impressive array of features certainly rival everything that Spotify has to offer. You can like songs, skip tracks, and create a custom queue on Deezer. Moreover, Deezer’s “Made for You” section creates new custom mixes for you every day.

Deezer offers Hi-Fi settings to choose from and boasts better audio quality overall.Deezer has a lot of different options, but it's the service's intelligent algorithm system that makes it most appealing. Sometimes referred to as Deezer Flow, it formulates a mix of favorites and new tracks in a way that means you're highly likely to enjoy. It works better than some competitors and has a reasonable price too. High-fidelity music is available, but it's not as high-end as elsewhere. 

Deezer is free to use, but you’ll need a paid subscription to play songs without advertisements in between, or play music offline on your mobile device.

ProsCons
  • Available in hundreds of countries

  • High sound quality

  • Good crop of original content, including video

  • Awesome interface

  • Lets you upload MP3 files on the desktop

  • Live radio

  • Lyrics

  • Podcasts

  • Useful, free tier on mobile

  • Editor teams make awesome playlists

  • Only shuffle play

  • Freemium features are limited

  • Limited number of podcasts

  • Can't rewind live radio streams

  • Free tier on PC is limited to 30-second snippets

  • Mobile apps lack MP3-upload compatibility

Price:

  • Free trials: One month for all paid plans.

  • Deezer Premium: $9.99/mo and removes the ads, lets you listen to specific tracks, offers better audio quality, and lets you download your music. You can connect up to three devices to your account. If you pay annually, you get a 25% discount at $89.91 for the year.

  • Deezer Hi-Fi: $14.99/mo and has all the features of the Premium plan but adds High Fidelity sound.

  • Budget Plans: Family ($14.99/mo) offers six individual Premium accounts and the ability to connect up to 13 different devices.

App Download: iOS    Android

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3.SoundCloud

#Best for Remixing Music

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Source:apps.apple.com

Found in 2007, SoundCloud boasts a collection of over 265 million songs, podcasts, remixes, and covers.SoundCloud is a Swedish-founded online audio distribution platform and music sharing website that enables its users to upload, promote, and share audio, as well as a digital signal processor enabling listeners to stream audio. Soundcloud is great for collaborators, audiophiles, and musicians themselves. It’s long been known as the best place to discover new and emerging artists, and it’s a great platform for recording yourself and getting your name out there.

It’s more than just a digital audio streaming platform but a community. People share their work on it, follow fellow artists back and help each other out. There are more than just songs on it, there are podcasts, musical scores, beats, and all sorts of audio creations on it, underground or mainstream.

Soundcloud is the “broadcast-yourself” version for audio clips as opposed to video clips of YouTube. That is its main difference compared to Spotify. Anyone, any artist has got the freedom to upload their creations on Soundcloud without the curation or process imposed by Spotify.It is the preferred music streaming platform for new indie artists, those that you probably couldn't find on Spotify (shoutouts to electronic music lovers). Soundcloud is great for collaborators, audiophiles, and musicians themselves. If you’re looking for new music and mixtape raps,SoundCloud is a good alternative to Spotify.

ProsCons

It is a website with global outreach

Highly active community

Great place to discover new artists

It allows young professionals to collaborate, edit, and modify their music

It can attract a lot of attention, including from the media, record companies and agents

Not the best for choosing tracks you want to listen to

It can be detrimental to mental health

It won’t automatically import your existing podcast episodes

Price: While anyone can sign up and use SoundCloud at no-cost, there are advanced features that will require a monthly subscription.

  • $4.99 per month for SoundCloud Go 

  • $9.99 per month for SoundCloud Go+

App Download:  iOS    Android

When you place an order on SoundCloud,you can get up to $15 super cash back from Extrabux.

4.Apple Music

#Best for Apple Users

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Source:apple.com

When you talk about digital music distribution Apple Music is always there with Spotify. Apple Music runs second to Spotify in terms of subscribers, but surpasses its rival in a few key areas. It offers a friendly interface, over 90 million tracks, and compatibility with both iOS and Android devices.Going with Apple Music has certain perks you won’t get anywhere else. For starters, it has more exclusives than its competitors. Also, new music is made available faster than anywhere else.The user experience now seems much closer to Spotify. Apple also has launched lossless and spatial audio for a better quality of listen. 

Like Spotify, Apple Music subscribers can create and share their own playlists publicly on social media. You can find playlists for any occasion – whether you need the best music to party to, or some vibes background beats while studying late at night, Apple Music has got you covered.Apple Music also has pre-made radio stations curated by celebrity DJs and musical artists that you can listen to, as well as the “Connect” feature where you can get an exclusive look at what your favorite singers and bands are up to.  This is the obvious choice, and for good reason. Apple Music is Spotify's biggest competitor, and the overall user experience is as close to Spotify's as it gets.

ProsCons
  • Paid Apple Music users will have access to download albums and songs they like for offline listening

  • Huge music catalog yet easy music discovering

  • Available in 167 countries

  • Combines your iTunes library with music you don't own and a choice of music lockers

  • You can control what you hear or search for new music using Siri on Apple HomePod or other Apple devices

  • Higher sound quality for some content

  • Integrates very well with all Apple devices

  • Stronger incorporation of your personal music library

  • The Android app and experience isn't as smooth as the iOS one

  • While there are Android and Windows apps, Apple Music doesn't always play nice with smart speakers or other products not made by Apple

  • Smaller podcast selection

  • No free plan option

  • Some limitations with listening offline


Price:

  • Free trials: 1 month for all plans

  • Individual plan: $9.99/mo 

  • Family plan: $14.99/mo, provides the Individual features for up to six people.

  • Student plan: $4.99/mo

App Download:  iOS    Android

When you place an order on Apple Music,you can get up to $3.75 super cash back from Extrabux.

5.Pandora

#Best for Podcasts

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Source:apps.apple.com

Pandora is one of the grandparents of music services and was one of the first to offer playlists developed by a listener’s preferences. Pandora is also one of Spotify's biggest competitors,the streaming music juggernaut that boasts the same features as Spotify's radio with a few other tricks of its own. The platform offers highly personalized listening experiences to more than 70 million monthly users whether you’re at home or on the go.It allows you to create custom radio stations based on songs or artists that you like, and it allows 100 as opposed to Spotify’s 20! 

Pandora allows you to create stations from your favorite artists, songs, genres, and browsers or search to find recommendations for stations that suit your activity or mood. You can also discover podcasts that speak to you.

As a solid budget-friendly choice to replace Spotify, Pandora offers multiple paid versions. Pandora Plus offers extensive search capabilities to help you find the tracks you’re looking for fast, and a Pandora Premium subscription gives you the ability to share all of your favorite playlists with your friends.The downside is that your options for listening to songs on demand are limited, and a free account only lets you skips songs every so often, and causes advertisements to play between songs. 

ProsCons
  • It’s easy to get started

  • Extensive podcast options

  • One of the largest user bases, thanks to its free version

  • Pandora's Music Genome Project analyzes each track according to 450 different attributes in order to give better suggestions

  • Not available outside the US

  • Its audio quality is among the lowest available, even on the Premium subscription (192Kbps)

  • It doesn't really offer enough of an incentive for an upgrade from the free tier compared to the others here

  • Some issues with buffering

  • Social sharing is allowed only for paid subscribers

Price:

  • Free trial: 30 days for Plus, 60 days for Premium

  • Pandora Plus: $4.99/mo.It removes the ads and lets you listen offline, but you still have to view an ad to select specific tracks. Audio quality goes up to 192Kbps.

  • Pandora Premium: $9.99/mo.It  gives you all of the Plus features, removes all advertising, and lets you make and share playlists.

  • Budget Plans: The Family plan ($14.99/mo) includes six accounts. Both Premium Student ($4.99/mo) and Premium Military ($7.99/mo) give you the same features as the regular Premium account.

App Download:  iOS    Android

When you place an order on Pandora,you can get $1.75 super cash back from Extrabux.

6.TIDAL

#Best for High-Fidelity Music

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Source:apps.apple.com

TIDAL is the first artist-owned global entertainment and music streaming platform and app built for fans. Tidal has always been pitched as the service that compensates artists the best and offers the best audio quality.

Tidal has been struggling to keep up with its bigger rivals like Spotify, though it does have some interesting features.For starters, Tidal claims that its audio library is even larger than Spotify’s, and it further says it features some hard-to-find independent artists in a variety of genres. Furthermore, Tidal offers access to over 250,000 documentaries, full-length films, music videos, and filmed concerts, part of a plan to become one of several serious Spotify alternatives.

TIDAL members enjoy exclusively curated content that directly connects artists with their fans in multiple ways. The service offers high-fidelity, CD sound quality music, high resolution video, an opportunity to discover new artists via TIDAL Discovery, and unique experiences via TIDAL X. If you're an audiophile, a fan of urban music or a mix of both, then Tidal should appeal to you. 

ProsCons
  • Better sound quality than rivals

  • High-fidelity music streams including Dolby Atmos surround mixes

  • Hi-res Masters tracks

  • Lots of video content, including concert livestreams

  • Profiles and record reviews on every page, plus up-and-coming artist spotlights

  • Free tier, while its top tier offers payouts for favorite artists

  • The mobile apps and web player aren't as straightforward as some others

  • The catalog isn't as exhaustive as Spotify Premium

  • Most high-res music uses MQA, which needs a specialized decoder

  • More expensive when subscribed to via App Store

  • Potential CarPlay issues

Price:

  • The Free plan offers sound quality up to 160Kbps, some interruptions to promote the service itself (Tidal says there are no third-party ads), and playlists. You can request specific songs and albums, even on the free plan.

  • Free trial: 30 days for paid plans

  • HiFi pan: $9.99/mo.It provides HiFi audio quality, no ads, and offline listening.

  • HiFi Plus plan: $19.99/mo.It  adds Master quality audio along with Dolby Atmos and Sony 360 Reality Audio. Tidal also says it gives 10 percent of your subscription to the artists you listen to most and that “the artists you stream will get paid depending on your streaming habits.”

  • Budget Plans: Family plan from $14.99/mo to add  to 5 additional accounts on one great value subscription.Students get 50% off both TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus plans.

App Download:  iOS    Android

7.BANDCAMP

#Best for Discovering Music 

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Source:apps.apple.com

Bandcamp is a music streaming platform and community that emphasizes giving artists or aspiring musicians the opportunity to put their music out and get fair compensation for their work. They can successfully gain fans on the platform and eventually start a career.It’s more than just a place to listen to music on but a platform and a community that is pro-musician.You can sign up for an account as a fan, artist, or label, and then discover new music and artists. You can use gift cards to support your favorite bands and they even run a blog with trending artists and musings from around the indie music world.

If you have a passion for supporting independent artists who make great quality music, then you’ll love using Bandcamp. For an app that doesn’t use paid advertising, it certainly has an exhaustive list of features and a great user experience. You can pre-order new albums before they come out, download files for offline listening, and catch new live concert streams every day.

Unlike Spotify, Bandcamp allows users to stream your music or buy your discography in physical or digital formats (with a commission of 10 to 15%). 

ProsCons
  • The best place to discover indie artists

  • Free but you can support artists directly if you love them

  • New music you won't have heard of before

  • Not many mainstream artists

Price: Bandcamp user accounts are completely free. Artists set individual prices for tracks and albums.

App Download:  iOS    Android

8.Amazon Music Unlimited

#Best for Amazon Customers

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Source:apps.apple.com

Amazon Music Unlimited lives up to its name with unlimited access to 75 million songs with unlimited skips when listening offline. There are millions of podcast episodes, too, so there's no shortage of options. Searching is easy with ultra HD quality tracks also available in the results. Amazon Prime members get a discounted subscription, so it's tempting if you're already tied into the ecosystem, especially with excellent integration with Echo devices. 

In terms of usability, the Music Unlimited interface is also more powerful than before with playlists, genres and podcasts all accessible from the main page.Amazon Music Unlimited runs on a slightly different subscription model than every other service on our list. Prime members get discounted subscription pricing, and Echo owners get the option to use the service on only one device for more than 50% off.

ProsCons
  • Offers free music stations for Amazon Echo, Echo Dot and Amazon Tap (includes ads)

  • Hi-res and spatial audio from Sony 360 Reality Audio and Dolby Atmos at no extra charge

  • Some ultra HD quality tracks

  • Spatial audio

  • Not quite as many tracks as competitors.

  • Artist profiles don't have biographies

  • The service no longer includes a music locker

Price:

  • $7.99 /mofor Amazon Prime members

  • $9.99/mo for Amazon customers without a Prime membership 

  • Free 1 month free trial

App Download:  iOS    Android

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