7 Best Spotify Alternatives In 2022 (Cheap + Free Options)

Isaac Sseyonga

Isaac Sseyonga

7 Best Spotify Alternatives and Competitors (Cheap + Free Options)

Searching for the best Spotify alternatives and competitors? Your search ends here!

Okay, so maybe you’re like me, and Spotify isn’t doing it for you.

Maybe the ads are too much, the price is too high, or your music just doesn’t stream as smoothly as you’d like.

Whatever the reason, don’t worry – plenty of great Spotify alternatives are out there!

This list includes paid and free options, so whatever your budget may be, you’re sure to find something that works for you.

Check ’em out!

What are the best Spotify alternatives and competitors?

Here are our best picks of the top Spotify alternatives you should consider using for music streaming.

1. YouTube Music.

YouTube Music | Spotify alternatives

Spotify has been our go-to music streaming service for many years now, but a new player on the market might be able to dethrone the reigning champ.

YouTube Music is a new streaming service from the popular video platform.

It aims to be a Spotify alternative, with a similar ad-supported free tier and a $9.99 per month premium option.

YouTube Music has some distinct advantages over the Spotify app. For one, it creates mixtapes based on your previous music preferences. It also uses AI to tailor your playlists to your liking automatically.

And, of course, as a YouTube product, it has a massive catalog of official music videos and user-generated content like parodies and cover songs. However, the free version of YouTube Music is ad-supported, just like Spotify’s free service.

So, if you’re looking for an ad-free experience, you’ll need to pony up the $9.99 per month. But overall, YouTube Music is a strong Spotify alternative and well worth checking out.

Key features of YouTube music:

  • Ability to download: Spotify offers a basic download feature for its songs, but YouTube Music gives you the ability to download an entire album with just one tap.
  • Ads free on premium: For $9.99 monthly, you can get the same ad-free experience on YouTube Music like Spotify.
  • Use audio-only mode: Listen to your favorite songs without having to watch the music video with YouTube Music’s audio-only mode.
  • Background play: YouTube Music lets you continue listening to a song even if you close the app or turn off your screen.
  • Private music library: Spotify allows you to create your custom playlists and save songs to your library, but YouTube Music takes it one step further by letting you make your entire library private.

YouTube music pricing:

For basic access, you can use the free version of YouTube Music.

However, if you want ad-free listening and offline downloads, you’ll need to sign up for YouTube Music Premium:

  • YouTube Music Premium starts at $9.99/month or $99.99/year.
  • Family plan: $14.99/month and includes up to six accounts.
  • College students: $4.99/month.

Try YouTube music free and see how it compares to Spotify.

2. Soundcloud.

Soundcloud best Spotify alternatives

Spotify and Soundcloud are both music streaming services that allow users to listen to a variety of songs.

However, there are some key streaming differences between the two services that make Soundcloud a better Spotify alternative for many users.

Spotify may be the reigning champ for streaming music, but it’s not the only game in town; if you’re looking for new music and mixtape raps, Soundcloud is a great alternative.

With a collection of over 130 million songs, podcasts, remixes, and covers, it’s a veritable goldmine of musical discovery.

And if you’re an artist, it’s an excellent platform for recording and sharing your music with other users.

You can also give feedback on other people’s tracks, which is a great way to discover new and emerging artists.

Key features of Soundcloud:

  • Mobile Access: You can access Soundcloud from your mobile device, which is excellent for listening to music on the go.
  • Publishing / Sharing: Soundcloud allows you to publish and share your music with other users, which is an incredible way to get feedback and exposure for your tracks.
  • Video Monetization Tools: If you’re an artist, you can monetize your music videos on Soundcloud to make extra money.
  • Engagement Tracking: Soundcloud allows you to track how many people listen to your tracks and how long they’re listening to help you gauge the popularity of your tracks and see how well they’re doing.
  • Audience Analytics: Soundcloud provides detailed audience analytics that can help you understand your listeners and tailor your music to them.

Soundcloud pricing:

Let’s look at SoundCloud’s pricing options to see if they fit your budget. SoundCloud Basic is free, but it comes with limitations on how much music you can upload and how many people can listen to it:

  • SoundCloud Basic: Free
  • SoundCloud Repost: $2.50 per month billed yearly
  • SoundCloud Pro Unlimited: $7.20 per month when billed yearly

So, if you’re looking for a cheap Spotify alternative that offers something fresh and new, check out Soundcloud.

3. Apple Music.

Apple Music | alternative to Spotify

There are plenty of Spotify alternatives out there, but Apple Music has a few things going for it that make it worth considering.

For starters, it has more exclusives than its competitors. Spotify may have the biggest catalog of songs, but Apple Music has the hottest new tracks.

In addition, Apple Music’s recommendations are top-notch. The algorithm knows what you like and does a great job of recommending new music that you’ll love.

And if you’re undecided about whether you want to commit to a paid subscription, the trial version allows full access for up to three months.

Spotify may have started the streaming revolution, but Apple Music is leading the charge into the future.

Most importantly, Apple Music supports artists with tools to create, release, and measure music across a global stage.

So not only is it a great Spotify alternative for listeners, but it’s also great for the music artists who create the tunes we all love.

Key features of Apple music.

  • Top 100 global: With Apple Music, you have access to the top 100 songs in over 60 countries.
  • Stream Apple music to Airplay: You can stream your favorite tunes wirelessly to any Airplay-compatible speaker.
  • Access on iPod, iPhone, MacBook, Android, desktop, and more: Apple Music is available on all your favorite devices so you can listen to your music on the go.
  • Auto play: Automatically plays songs from your library based on your listening history.
  • Add songs to your library: You can add any song you like to your personal Apple Music library.

Apple Music pricing:

With music, we all have different tastes. And when it comes to paying for music, everyone has a different budget. So, it only makes sense that Apple Music would offer various pricing options to fit everyone’s needs:

  • Student: $4.99 per month for students to enjoy all the latest hits and discover new music
  • Individual: $9.99 per month for individuals who want a little more control over their music selection
  • Family: $14.99 per month for families who want to share their love of music

Whatever your budget, one of those Apple Music plans is right for you.

4. Tidal.

Tidal

Tidal is one of the most popular alternatives to Spotify. It offers its standard services for $9.99 per month to compete with well-established giants like Spotify and Apple Music.

For $19.99 per month, CD-quality songs are available in FLAC format, and the sound quality here is unparalleled.

A family plan is in place for both tiers, allowing unlimited access for up to five people.

Tidal also has a library of over 50 million songs and 175,000 videos. It’s one of the best options for music lovers who want high-quality audio without breaking the bank.

And if you’re looking for a little different service, Tidal also has exclusive content from artists like Jay-Z, Rihanna, and Madonna.

Exclusive content includes videos and concert tickets, which can be streamed or downloaded.

Key features of Tidal:

  • Offline playback: Tidal allows you to download your favorite songs and albums to listen to offline when you’re out of data.
  • Download to SD card: Download your music to an SD card so you can save storage on your phone.
  • Connect to Facebook: Easily connect your Tidal account to Facebook so you can share your favorite tunes with friends.
  • HD videos: For an immersive experience, Tidal offers high-definition videos for select songs and albums.
  • Transfer playlist from other services: With Tidal, you can quickly transfer your playlists from other streaming services like Spotify app and Apple Music.

Tidal pricing:

Decisions, decisions. Which Tidal subscription is right for you? Let’s break it down.

  • The HiFi plan offers standard sound quality for just $9.99 per month if you’re a music lover on a budget.
  • If you’re willing to splurge a little cash, the HiFi Plus plan gives you lossless High Fidelity sound quality for $19.99 per month.
  • And if you’re looking for a family-friendly music streaming option, the Family HiFi plan includes up to 5 additional family members for just $14.99 per month.
  • Or go all out with the Family HiFi Plus plan, which totals up to 6 members for $29.99 per month.

No matter which subscription you choose, Tidal has you covered with the best sound quality in streaming music.

5. Amazon Music.

Amazon Music like Spotify

Like Spotify, Amazon Music offers a vast library of songs you can listen to ad-free. You can create custom stations for your favorite artists or songs, and you can download music for offline playback.

One major difference is that Amazon Music doesn’t have a desktop app. You can only access it through a web browser, phone, or tablet.

If you own an Amazon Echo device, you can use voice commands to play music.

Amazon Music also has a family plan that lets up to six people share a subscription for $14.99 per month. That’s the same price as Spotify’s family plan.

And if you’re a Prime subscriber, then there’s no need to pay an additional fee for Amazon music.

Key features of Amazon Music:

  • Ultra HD and 3D playbacks: With Amazon Music HD, you can stream over 50 million high-quality songs and enjoy 3D audio.
  • Unlimited skips: Your subscription grants you access to an unlimited number of skips.
  • Curated playlists: There are hundreds of playlists to choose from, all organized by genre, mood, or activity.
  • Integration with Alexa: You can use voice commands to play music on your Echo device.

Amazon Music pricing:

Music lovers rejoice! Amazon Music is shaking up the industry with its competitive pricing.

  • For just $8.99 per month, Prime members can enjoy unlimited access to Amazon’s vast catalog of songs.
  • And if you’re not a Prime member? You can still sign up for Amazon Music for just $9.99 per month.
  • Amazon is also offering a family plan for just $14.99 per month. Up to six family members can enjoy all the benefits of Amazon Music, including ad-free listening and exclusive discounts on music downloads.
  • And if you’ve got an Echo device, you can get even more out of your Amazon Music subscription by signing up for the Echo plan for just $3.99 per month.

6. Deezer.

Deezer

Deezer music streaming service has over 35 million songs in its catalog. It offers three tiers of service: basic, premium, and family.

The basic plan costs $9.99 per month and includes unlimited skips, higher quality music, and offline saves.

Premium costs $19.99 per month and comes with several extra features, including ad-free listening, song lyrics, and the ability to create custom playlists.

Family costs $29.99 per month and allows for six simultaneous users.

One of Deezer’s key advantages over Spotify is its availability in many countries that Spotify is not available in. Deezer is available in 180 countries, while Spotify is available in only 79 countries. This makes Deezer a more viable option for people living in countries where Spotify is not available.

Deezer also allows for higher quality music streaming than Spotify. With the premium plan, you can stream music at up to 320 kbps, while Spotify only allows for streaming at up to 160 kbps.

Additionally, Deezer offers the ability to save up to 3,000 songs for offline playback with the premium plan.

Key features of Deezer:

  • Listening history: Keeps track of the songs you listen to and makes recommendations based on your listening history.
  • Songcatcher: This allows you to identify songs you hear playing in the background and add them to your Deezer library.
  • Translate lyrics: Translate lyrics into several different languages with Deezer’s built-in lyrics translation feature.
  • Notifications on new releases: Deezer will notify you when new music from your favorite artists is released.

Deezer Pricing:

Deezer is one of the Spotify alternatives that offer a few different pricing options:

  • Deezer Standard: $9.99 per month or $99.90 per year and comes with 320Kbps audio.
  • Deezer HiFi: $14.99 per month streams 16-bit/44.1 kHz FLAC files and Sony 360 Reality Audio.
  • Deezer Student: $4.99 per month and matches the Premium account features

If you’re looking for a Spotify alternative that offers similar sound quality for the same price, Deezer would be an excellent option to consider.

7. Pandora.

Pandora

Pandora is a music streaming service that offers over 40 million songs for its users to listen to. It’s one of the popular streaming services and has been around since 2000.

There are a few different ways to use Pandora.

The first is by creating a free account that allows you to listen to stations based on artists, songs, or genres. You can also create your custom station by entering an artist or song.

The second way to use Pandora is by upgrading to Pandora Plus for $4.99 per month. This plan allows you to skip songs, listen offline, and have an ad-free experience.

The third way to use Pandora is by upgrading to Pandora Premium for $9.99 per month. This gives you access to Pandora Plus features and the ability to create your custom playback list.

The only drawback is that Pandora is only available in the US.

Key features of Pandora:

  • Listen to podcasts: Find and listen to your favorite podcasts on your phone, iPod, or laptop for any shows that interest you.
  • Pandora stories: Hear behind-the-scenes stories and insights from the artists you love.
  • Tour and ticket information for artists: Get the latest info on where your favorite artists are touring and buy tickets directly from Pandora.
  • Category browser: Easily find new stations to explore based on your mood or favorite genres.
  • On-demand playback: Listen to any song, album, or artist you want on demand.

Pricing:

Trying to decide which Pandora subscription is right for you? Here’s an overview of the differences between Plus, Premium, and Premium Family.

  • Plus is the most affordable option, at just $4.99 per month (or $54.89 annually)
  • Premium is the mid-range option, at $9.99 per month (or $109.89 annually)
  • Finally, Premium Family is $14.99 per month or $164.89 annually, which is perfect for households with multiple users.

No matter what your budget, Pandora got you covered. So, take your pick and enjoy the tunes!

Why use Spotify alternatives?

Spotify has been a game-changer in the world of music streaming, but it’s not perfect. Here are some of the drawbacks of using Spotify:

●     Annoying ads:

We’ve all been there: you’re trying to listen to your favorite album on Spotify, but every few songs, you’re interrupted by an ad.

It’s annoying, especially if you’re trying to focus or get into a flow state.

But here’s the thing: ads are how Spotify stays afloat. Without them, we wouldn’t be able to enjoy our favorite tunes for free.

So next time you hear an ad on Spotify, consider it a small price to pay for all that free music. And if you really can’t stand the ads, you can always upgrade to premium!

●     Limited track skipping:

Spotify’s track-skipping policy can be a pain, especially when trying to find a particular song.

Thankfully, there’s a workaround: create a playlist with all the songs you want to skip and listen to that instead. It’s sure not the most elegant solution, but it’ll get the job done.

And who knows, maybe you’ll end up enjoying the process of creating your custom playlist.

So next time Spotify app tries to limit your track skipping, remember there’s always a way around it.

●     Limited to specific countries:

Spotify may be the world’s largest music streaming service, but it’s not available everywhere.

In fact, there are many countries where Spotify is not available, including China, Russia, and India.

This can be frustrating for Spotify users who frequently travel, as they will not be able to access their accounts while they are outside of the supported countries.

Thankfully, there are a few workarounds that can help.

For example, use a VPN to connect to a supported country server, allowing you to access Spotify as if you were physically located there.

So even if Spotify isn’t available in your country, you can still enjoy your favorite tunes.

●     The free version is limited:

Let’s face it, the free version of Spotify is pretty limited.

Ads between every song? No thanks. Limited track skipping? That’s just frustrating. And lower quality audio? Come on; we deserve better than that.

If you want to enjoy Spotify fully, you need to upgrade to the premium version. Then you’ll be able to listen ad-free, with no limits on track skipping and high-quality audio.

So go ahead; treat yourself to the premium experience today. Your ears will thank you for it.

●     Shotty playlists:

If you’re anything like me, you’ve had your fair share of shotty Spotify playlists.

You know the ones I’m talking about – the playlists full of songs that don’t fit together well or don’t match your taste.

There’s a way to fix this problem. All you need is to create your playlists! That way, you can control what goes into them and ensure they’re always tailored to your taste.

So next time you’re stuck with a shotty playlist, don’t despair – take matters into your own hands and create something better.

Wrap up.

It’s hard to know the actual winner regarding music streaming services. While Spotify is the most popular, several great alternatives to Shopify offer unique features and benefits.

For example, Soundcloud is great for indie artists and lovers of underground music, while Apple Music has an impressive catalog and great integration with iOS devices.

Tidal offers high-quality audio and exclusive content, while Amazon Music is a great option if you already use Amazon Prime.

And finally, Deezer and Pandora are great options if you’re looking for a more personalized listening experience.

Ultimately, the best Spotify competitors and alternatives come down to what matters most and what you’re looking for in a music streaming service.

Disclosure: Some of the links in this article may be affiliate links, which can provide compensation to me at no cost to you if you decide to purchase a paid plan. These are products I’ve personally used and stand behind. This site is not intended to provide financial advice and is for entertainment only. You can read our affiliate disclosure in our privacy policy.

Related Articles

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.