Born in Sweden and launched for the first time in the European market in 2008, Spotify was a pioneer platform for streaming music.
Its business model has been a success from the beginning, combining a service that offers users music for free in exchange for receiving advertising or paid subscriptions to avoid ads and have better quality music.
Spotify has not stopped growing since its inception, currently having more than 200 million active users with, approximately, half of them using the paid subscription service. The “king” of streaming music seemed untouchable, but a tough competitor has emerged.
In June 2015, Apple launched its own streaming music service named “Apple Music”. Initially, it was launched exclusively for Apple users with the iOS operating system, but Apple has significantly increased its market share, allowing Apple Music to be used on Windows or even Android.
In much less time in the market than its competitor Spotify, Apple Music has managed to position itself very quickly, already having more than 50 million paid subscribers, and becoming the most popular streaming music service in the United States.
With similar prices for both services, between $9.99 and $14.99, depending on the plan chosen, the differences for the user between both services are certainly minimal in this regard.
Thanks to its long presence in the market, Spotify has traditionally had a list of impressive songs, with an available catalogue of 35 million songs. However, Apple’s service has also exceeded this figure, promoting nearly 50 million songs, with the added advantage that any song in the iTunes library is automatically added to the Apple Music service.
With these aspects in mind, it can be difficult to know which of the two offers the best music streaming service.
Spotify’s free plan is much more complete than Apple’s and works fine for those who do not mind having advertising. In the paid subscription, the differences between both brands are reduced.
To discover new music, Spotify has the “Discover ” tool that will recommend songs and artists based on our search history or favourites, in addition to the “Explore ” tool to find the music that what we want. As for Apple Music, it features the section “For you” which, once configured correctly, will make constant suggestions about new music that fit your tastes.
The quality of service is another aspect to consider. Apple Music audio is 256kbps, both for paid users and for the free service while, on Spotify, the free service broadcasts at 160kbps but Premium users can enjoy 320kbps quality.
Another aspect that is usually compared is the radio service offered by both platforms. Apple Music stands out from the crowd thanks to its 24/7 radio function, which is highly valued by its users.
Overall, both streaming music services have very small differences that set them apart, but enough of them that we can make our minds up and choose one or the other.
If we opt for the economic option, Spotify should clearly be our choice, offering a much more complete version than Apple Music. If we are passionate about music and do not mind subscribing to a paid service, then probably the best option is Apple Music which also offers three trial months to decide.