Whether you’re a fan of classical music or heavy metal, anyone with an interest in music has pondered the age-old question at least once in their lifetime: Should I get Spotify or Apple Music?
Spotify, a Swedish audio and streaming service provider, was founded by Daniel Ek and Martin Lorentzon in 2006 and has grown to become the main competitor of Apple Music, which is founded by one of the largest American multinational technology companies in the world. Since the release of Apple Music in 2015, the two apps have been competing over the hearts of music lovers. But the question still stands: Which of the two is better?
Both Apple Music and Spotify have their own strengths and weaknesses. Design-wise, both apps are sleek and modern but new users may find Spotify’s interface to be more organized and easier to navigate through. However, if you are an avid Apple product user, you may find Apple Music’s interface to be more familiar.
Emily Gelbard, a sophomore attending LHS, stated that “I prefer Apple Music because of Apple CarPlay and the convenience of it.” Apple CarPlay is now available on all major vehicle manufacturers and is available on almost all iPhone models, making it extremely convenient for many users to use alongside Apple Music, which is another factor to consider when deciding which is the best for you.
However, when it comes to recommendations, Spotify takes the cake. At the bottom of each of your playlists, an infinite list of songs are recommended to you based on your listening history. You can also find new music on your Discover Weekly Playlist. Though Apple Music also learns from your listening habits to recommend you new music in its Listen Now tab, its algorithm can’t compete with Spotify.
In terms of price, both are quite similar. An individual plan is $10 ($5 for students) per month for both, and the family plan (up to six people) is $15 for Apple Music and $16 for Spotify. Additionally, for new subscribers, a free trial of three months is provided. However, the greatest difference from a consumer’s point of view is the fact that Apple Music does not have a free version. Though Spotify’s free version has ads and lacks many features, millions of users who may not have the ability to pay for a subscription are able to enjoy music on Spotify as well.
Though Spotify has around 70 million songs, Apple Music wins this round with a catalog of around 75 million songs. Apple Music also offers exclusives for certain music videos from time to time. Both apps also have hundreds of thousands of radio stations and podcasts, but Apple Music also has a separate radio station known as Beats1 Radio, which you can listen to in real time and is hosted by actual DJs.
Spotify however, is great for listening to music with your friends or family. Features such as Spotify Codes and Group Sessions are great ways to be able to share playlists with one another and listen to music together. It has also added a collaboration feature where multiple people can add songs onto a shared playlist. “I prefer Spotify because I can make collaborative playlists where I can just listen to whatever song my friends put in it when I don’t know what to listen to,” says Yerin Byun, another sophomore from LHS.
All in all, rather than asking which app is better, a better question to ask would be, “Which one would work best for me?” If you love Apple products, try going for Apple Music. If you love listening to music with others, try Spotify. Both apps are great but it truly comes down to what would work best for you according to your specific preferences. After trying both, I’ve personally found Spotify to be more suited to my needs as I prefer its design, cross-compatibility, and ability to share music with friends easily.