The 15 Largest Free Music Streaming Services
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The music streaming industry is growing at a fast clip, with an increasing number of users opting for online music streaming services. This growth has led to a vast array of music streaming services, each with its unique features, pros, and cons. With so many options to choose from, it can be difficult to know which service to choose. In this article, we have compiled a list of the 15 most popular free online music streaming sites. We also provide a discussion of each service with its pros and cons, to help you make an informed decision about which service is right for you.
Music streaming services have revolutionized the way people listen to music. No longer do you need to download music files to your device or purchase individual songs or albums. With a music streaming service, you can access a vast library of music on various devices, including smartphones, laptops, tablets, and smart speakers. Music streaming services have also made it easier for independent artists to share their music with the world. With so many advantages to music streaming services, it's no wonder that they continue to grow in popularity.
Here is an overview (detailed descriptions are below the table; sorted alphabetically):
In this list, we will provide an overview of the 15 most popular free music streaming sites or, if they are subscription services, include them if they have free trial periods.
List of the 15 Largest Free Music Streaming Services
|Name||Song Library||Selective Streaming||Free Content||Premium (monthly)||Premium Free Trial
|Amazon Music||100 million||yes||yes||from $8.99||30 days
|Apple Music||100+ million||yes||no||from $10.99||30 days
|Deezer||90+ million||yes||yes w/ads||from $10.99||30 days
|iHeart Radio||30 million||partial||yes w/ads||from $4.99||30 days
|JioSaavn ||55+ million||yes||yes w/ads||from $4.99||n7 days
|KKBox ||90+ million||yes||no||from $13.90||14 days
|LiveXLive||13 million||yes||yes w/ads||from $2.99||no
|Napster ||110+ million||yes||no||$9.99||30 days
|Pandora||30 million||yes||yes w/ads||from $4.99||30/60 days
|Qobuz ||100+ million||yes||no||from $12.99||30 days
|Soundcloud||150+ million||yes||yes w/ads||from $4.99||30 days
|Spotify||100+ million||yes||yes w/ads||from $9.99||30 days
|Tidal||100+ million||yes||no||from $9.99||30 days
|YouTube Music ||100+ million||yes||yes w/ads||from $4.99||7 days
Reviews of the 15 Largest Free Music Streaming Services
Amazon Music Review
Amazon Music offers different options for music streaming. Amazon Music Free allows access to top playlists and thousands of stations with ads. On Android and iOS, users can listen to select songs from curated playlists on demand.
Amazon Music is included with Prime membership and offers ad-free access to 100 million songs, top podcasts, playlists, and stations at no extra cost.
A huge problem with Amazon Music Prime is that music can only be played in shuffle mode, which means that users cannot play individual songs from artists, albums, or playlists. If you want that feature you have to upgrade to the Amazon Music Unlimited for $9 a month.
Amazon Music Unlimited is a premium subscription service with a catalog of 100 million HD songs and millions of Ultra HD songs. The service also offers a growing collection of Spatial Audio mastered in Dolby Atmos and 360 Reality Audio that can be accessed through the Amazon Music app on various devices.
Apple Music Review
Apple Music is a paid, on-demand music streaming service from Apple with a content library that totals 100 million songs. Add to that plenty of videos and radio stations. Not included are odcasts and audiobooks, for which Apple has a separate app.
There are four subscription plans – individuals, students, and families – with prices ranging from $4.99 to $16.99 per month.
Apple Music provides no free content but a one-month free trial period, which can be extended to six months if you purchase eligible Apple products like AirPods, Beats, MacBooks or a HomePod mini.
It offers an excellent user interface, impressive music curation, lossless audio, and various types of content like videos and radio.
The music curation, design, and interface are top-notch, making Apple Music a solid option when choosing between streaming services.
Deezer is a free music streaming service that offers a vast music library with over 90 million tracks, over 160,000 podcast titles, and access to over 32,000 radio stations. The service allows users to create playlists and access them on various devices, including smartphones and laptops.
The free version comes with ads, and you need to have an internet connection to stream music. Deezer also offers a premium version that removes ads and includes additional features such as the ability to play any song on demand and access to exclusive content. The premium version starts at $10.99 per month.
Deezer is an excellent choice if you're in search of a music streaming app that offers a wide range of content, including both mainstream and indie music, with high-quality audio. Its sleek and straightforward design is also visually appealing and user-friendly. However, if you're specifically looking for exceptional music discovery or a more extensive free plan, you may want to explore other streaming apps.
Deezer has a lot of attractive features, including a Free plan, HiFi audio, an outstanding music discovery algorithm, podcasts, and handy features like SongCatcher. It also has a well-designed interface that is easy to navigate. Nevertheless, there are some areas where the service could improve. For instance, it does not support video content on the app, and non-music content such as audiobooks is limited to certain countries.
iHeart Radio Review
iHeartRadio is a music streaming and internet radio service that allows users to listen to live radio stations, create personalized custom stations based on their favorite artists and songs, and discover new music. The service offers access to over 850 live radio stations across the United States, as well as a vast library of on-demand podcasts, playlists, and songs.
One of the main features of iHeartRadio is its ability to create custom radio stations based on user preferences. Users can create stations based on their favorite artists or songs, and the service will curate a playlist of similar tracks from a variety of genres. iHeartRadio also offers a feature called "Perfect For," which allows users to select a mood or activity (such as working out, driving, or studying) and the service will create a custom playlist of songs that fit that theme.
In addition to music, iHeartRadio also offers a range of other content, including news, sports, and talk radio programs. The service is available for free, with some limitations, or users can subscribe to iHeartRadio Plus or iHeartRadio All Access for additional features and ad-free listening.
iHeartRadio Plus is a subscription option that allows users to listen to hundreds of live radio stations without any commercials, access ad-free playlists and artist stations, and create unlimited personalized playlists. The subscription costs $4.99 per month if signed up through the web or Google Play Store, or $5.99 per month if signed up through the iOS App Store. Users can start a 30-day free trial and cancel at any time.
iHeartRadio All Access includes all the benefits of iHeartRadio Plus, as well as the ability to search and play any song, album, or playlist from a library of millions of songs on demand, save and replay any song played on the radio, and download music to listen offline on iPhone, tablet, or Android devices. The subscription costs $9.99 per month if signed up through the web or Google Play Store, or $12.99 per month if signed up through the iOS App Store.
Jango provides a personalized radio experience free from commercials, similar to having a radio station that exclusively plays your favorite music. Simply select a genre or artist of your choice, and Jango will take care of the rest. You can customize your listening experience even further by adding artists to your station, indicating your preferences for frequently played songs, blocking songs you don't want to hear, or adjusting the variety settings to prioritize popular hits or lesser-known gems.
Jango offers a large library of songs across various genres, including pop, rock, country, jazz, hip-hop, and more. The service also offers social networking features that allow users to share their stations with friends and family via Facebook and Twitter.
Jango is available on various platforms, including web browsers, iOS and Android mobile devices, and some home audio systems. While the service is primarily free, users can opt for a premium subscription that removes ads and offers other benefits.
JioSaavn is an Indian music streaming service that provides a vast collection of songs from various genres and languages. The platform is a merger between JioMusic and Saavn, two popular music streaming services in India, and was launched in 2018.
The service offers a comprehensive music library with over 55 million songs in more than 15 languages, including Hindi, Punjabi, Tamil, Telugu, Marathi, and English. The platform also features a curated selection of playlists, including mood-based playlists, artist-specific playlists, and top charts, making it easy for users to discover new music that matches their preferences.
In addition to its vast collection of songs, JioSaavn also offers exclusive original content, including podcasts, radio shows, and artist interviews. The platform features personalized recommendations based on a user's listening history, ensuring that users are always discovering new songs and artists that they will enjoy.
The JioSaavn app is available for both iOS and Android mobile devices and can be accessed through web browsers as well. The service is free with advertisements, but users can upgrade to JioSaavn Pro to enjoy ad-free streaming, unlimited downloads, and higher quality audio. Additionally, JioSaavn is integrated with Jio's telecom services in India, which means that Jio users can enjoy the service for free as part of their Jio subscription plan.
Overall, JioSaavn is a popular music streaming service in India, offering a comprehensive collection of songs, personalized recommendations, and exclusive content, making it a must-have for music lovers in the region.
KKBOX is a music streaming service based in Taiwan, which offers a vast collection of music to its users across various genres. It was launched in 2004 and has since become one of the most popular music streaming services in Asia. It is currently available in Taiwan, Japan, Singapore and Malaysia.
The service offers a range of music genres, including pop, rock, hip-hop, EDM, and more. KKBOX's library features music from various languages, including Mandarin, Cantonese, Japanese, Korean, and English, making it a popular choice for users in the Asian market.
KKBOX also offers various features, such as curated playlists, personalized recommendations, radio channels, and music videos. Users can create their playlists and share them with others. The service also offers lyrics and information about the artists and their music.
KKBOX offers only a paid subscription plan with a 14-day free trial period.
The service is available through a web browser or the KKBOX mobile app, which is available on both iOS and Android platforms. Users can access the music library on up to five devices with a single account.
LiveXLive is a music streaming service that provides live music performances, original content, and on-demand access to concerts, festivals, and events. The platform features live streams of concerts from around the world, as well as interviews with artists, music news, and behind-the-scenes footage.
In addition to music, LiveXLive also offers comedy shows, podcasts, and other entertainment content. Users can listen to curated playlists or create their own, and the service is available on various platforms, including web, mobile, smart speakers, and connected TVs.
LiveXLive aims to provide a comprehensive music experience for its users, offering access to live events and exclusive content in one place. It also provides a social component, allowing users to connect with other music fans and share their experiences through the platform.
The Plus membership at $2.99 per month (billed annually) removes all ads, allows unlimited skips, and pro=vides max audio quality.
With 110+ million songs, Napster is one of the largest online music streaming services in the world. The platform offers a vast collection of songs, spanning across various genres and languages, catering to the diverse musical preferences of its users. With its user-friendly interface, Napster provides easy access to music on multiple devices, including smartphones, tablets, laptops, and desktops.
Napster was founded in 1999 as a peer-to-peer file-sharing platform that allowed users to share and download music for free. However, due to copyright infringement issues, the service was shut down in 2001. In 2003, the company was re-launched as a legal music subscription service, offering users access to a massive library of licensed music.
Today, Napster continues to expand its music library, regularly adding new songs and albums from popular artists around the world. The platform also features curated playlists, radio stations, and personalized recommendations, making it easy for users to discover new music that matches their taste.
In addition to its extensive music collection, Napster also offers premium features like ad-free listening, offline playback, and high-quality audio streaming. The service is available in several countries, and users can choose from different subscription plans based on their needs and budget.
Pandora is a music streaming service that allows users to create personalized radio stations based on their favorite artists, genres, and songs. The service uses a proprietary algorithm known as the Music Genome Project, which analyzes the musical characteristics of each song in its library to create customized playlists for users.
Pandora is available only in the US, Australia, and New Zealand.
Users can create a Pandora account for free and choose from a variety of pre-made radio stations based on different genres, moods, and activities. They can also create their own stations by selecting a song or artist they like and letting Pandora generate a playlist of similar songs.
Pandora offers a premium subscription service called Pandora Plus, which provides ad-free listening, unlimited skips, and offline playback. They also offer Pandora Premium, which allows users to choose specific songs and create custom playlists, as well as access to on-demand content.
Pandora is available on a variety of platforms, including web browsers, mobile devices, smart speakers, and connected cars. The service is owned by SiriusXM Holdings Inc. and is headquartered in Oakland, California.
Quality of sound is a priority for Qobuz. This French-based music service offers high-quality recordings that are as close to the original studio recording as possible. They have convinced suppliers and labels to provide them with superior quality files, including CD-Quality 16-bit/44.1kHz files and 24-Bit Hi-Res files.
The service offers a vast collection of music across various genres, including classical, jazz, rock, pop, and more. Qobuz boasts of an extensive music library, with more than 100 million tracks available for streaming and downloading and over 500,000 album reviews and artist bios.
In addition to streaming, Qobuz also offers an option to download music for offline listening. The service offers a range of subscription plans, with options for both monthly and yearly subscriptions. Qobuz Studio includes studio quality streaming (FLAC 24-Bit up to 192 kHz) of over 100 million tracks, original editorial content such as interviews, articles, and reviews, and offline listening. Qobuz Sublime in addition includes discounts of up to 60% on hi-res purchases.
SoundCloud is the world's largest music and audio platform that offers an extensive selection of music from a diverse creator community. Since its launch in 2008, the platform has gained popularity for its unique features, including direct artist connections, the ability to share music, and the discovery of breakthrough tracks, demos, and podcasts.
The platform operates on an open concept that links creators with their fans globally. Music and audio creators use SoundCloud to share their content with a worldwide audience, monetize their creations, and obtain detailed feedback and statistics from the SoundCloud community.
SoundCloud is an online audio distribution platform and music sharing website that allows users to upload, promote, and share music and podcasts. It also offers a streaming service that allows users to listen to tracks and playlists from a large and diverse community of artists, DJs, podcasters, and creators from around the world.
SoundCloud's focus on user-generated content sets it apart from other streaming services. It allows emerging and independent artists to share their music with a global audience, build a fanbase, and connect with other creators and fans. In addition to music, SoundCloud also features a variety of audio content, including spoken-word performances, interviews, and sound effects.
SoundCloud's free tier SoundCloud Go allows users to access a limited selection of tracks, while the premium tier, called SoundCloud Go+, offers ad-free listening, offline playback, and access to a larger catalog of tracks. In addition, SoundCloud DJ allows to save unlimited tracks for offline playback within select DJ apps.
For creators, SoundCloud also offers a distribution service that allows artists to monetize their content across multiple platforms.
Spotify is a digital music streaming service that allows users to access millions of songs, podcasts, and other audio content from various devices.
Users can create playlists of their favorite songs, browse curated playlists by other users or Spotify staff, and discover new music through personalized recommendations based on their listening history. The platform also offers podcasts, audiobooks, and other audio content, and users can follow and share playlists and artists with friends.
Spotify is available in both a free, ad-supported version and a paid subscription version that offers additional features such as ad-free listening, offline playback, and high-quality audio. Plans include Individual ($9.99/month), Duo (2 accounts, $12.99/month), Family (6 accounts, $15.99/month), and Student ($4.99/month).
The service is accessible through the Spotify website or through the Spotify app, which is available on iOS and Android devices, as well as on desktop and other devices such as smart speakers and gaming consoles.
Tidal is a digital music and video streaming service that was launched in 2014. It offers high-fidelity sound quality, which means that users can stream music with CD-quality sound or better. Tidal also offers music videos, exclusive content, and editorial articles on music and culture.
One of the key features of Tidal is its emphasis on providing high-quality audio. The service uses lossless audio codecs such as FLAC, which means that the audio files are compressed without any loss of quality. This allows listeners to enjoy music in a more detailed and immersive way.
Tidal also offers a range of curated playlists, exclusive music releases, and live events. The platform has partnerships with a number of high-profile musicians and labels, such as Beyoncé, Jay-Z, and Prince, which has helped to attract a dedicated fan base.
Tidal offers both a standard subscription plan and a more expensive HiFi plan for those who want access to high-fidelity audio. The free plan is ad supported and gives access to all titles in "good" sound quality (up to 160 kbps). The HiFi plan gives access to all titles in "HiFi" sound quality (up to 1411 kbps) plus 650k videos, ad-free and with unlimited skips. The HiFi Plus plan has the benefits of the HiFi plan but with innovative audio formats (Master Quality Authenticated (MQA), Dolby Atmos, Sony 360 Reality Audio, and HiFi) up to 9216 kbps. These plans cost $9.99 and $19.99 monthly, respectively.
The service is accessible through the Tidal website and mobile apps for iOS and Android.
YouTube Music Review
YouTube Music has a vast library of songs, albums, and playlists, and also offers a range of features to enhance the user experience.
One of the significant advantages of YouTube Music is its personalized recommendation feature. The service uses machine learning algorithms to analyze the user's listening history and preferences and suggests songs and playlists that are tailored to their tastes. This feature helps users discover new artists and music that they might not have come across otherwise.
Another essential feature of YouTube Music is the ability to create playlists. Users can create their playlists, add songs from the platform, and share them with others. This feature enables users to curate their music collections and organize them in a way that makes sense to them. It also allows users to share their music with friends and family, making it a social platform for music lovers.
YouTube Music also provides access to official music videos, live performances, remixes, and covers. The platform hosts many live performances and concerts, making it a valuable resource for music fans who want to experience live music from their favorite artists.
Finally, YouTube Music supports offline playback, allowing users to download songs and playlists and listen to them offline. This feature is beneficial for users who want to save data or listen to music while traveling or when they don't have an internet connection.
YouTube Music Premium, which allows ad-free music streaming, charges $9.99 or $4.99 (for students) per month depending on if you enroll in an individual or family plan ($14.99 monthly), respectively.