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Spotify vs Apple Music: Which Music Streaming Service Reigns Supreme?

The music streaming market is booming, and with so many options available, it can be challenging to choose the right one. Spotify and Apple Music are two of the most popular services, each with its own strengths and weaknesses. In this article, we'll compare the two and help you decide which one is better suited to your needs.

Cross-Platform Availability

When it comes to cross-platform availability, Spotify takes the lead. It is accessible on desktop, mobile, and web, and supports a wide range of devices including iOS, Android, Windows, Mac, Apple Watch, Galaxy Wear, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, and Google Chromecast. The only downside is that it doesn't currently support Amazon Fire TV or Fire TV Stick.

On the other hand, Apple Music is available on Android, iOS, Mac, Apple Watch, and HomePod smart speakers. While it may not be as versatile as Spotify, it still covers the majority of devices.

User Interface

Spotify wins the UI battle with its beautiful and fluid design. The app features gradient touches that change according to the selected album or song, creating a visually pleasing experience. The navigation is user-friendly, with standard bottom tabs to access different options.

Apple Music, on the other hand, follows iOS guidelines with a simple white theme and support for dark mode. The major options are located at the bottom, but one drawback is that the music settings are buried within the device Settings app.

Song Suggestions

Both Spotify and Apple Music focus on providing personalized song suggestions and auto-playlists. Spotify is known for its superior recommendations in the industry. You can select your song preferences and artists, and be blown away by Spotify's curated suggestions.

Apple Music, on the other hand, asks for your music interests during startup and provides suggestions based on those interests. It also offers a browser menu that allows you to discover new songs and albums based on languages.

Listening Experience

Both Spotify and Apple Music offer high-quality music at 320 kbit/s. However, Spotify's default download settings are set at Normal (96 kbit/s), so be sure to change it to “Very High” in the settings for the best experience. Spotify's player screen is well-designed, with big buttons and a minimalist layout that is easy to use while driving.

Apple Music opts for a simpler player UI with minimal functions at the bottom. Unfortunately, casting functionality is limited to Apple devices such as Apple TV and HomePod speakers.

Special Features

Spotify offers more than just music, with its podcast integration and group listening feature. If you enjoy podcasts and prefer not to use a separate app, Spotify is the way to go. The app also offers gapless playback, a data saver mode, a built-in equalizer, social integration, and more.

Apple Music takes advantage of other Apple services, such as Siri shortcuts and Shazam integration. It also offers radio integration, automatic downloads, and the ability to set volume limits.

Price

In terms of price, Spotify offers three plans: Premium individual for $10/month, the Student plan at $5/month, and the Family plan for $30/month (which allows up to five additional members). These plans include an ad-free experience, high-quality music, and unlimited downloads.

Apple Music offers a free trial for the first three months, after which it costs $10/month for a personal plan and $15/month for the family plan (which also allows up to five additional members).

Conclusion

In summary, if you're heavily invested in the Apple ecosystem, Apple Music may be the better choice for you. However, Spotify shines in terms of cross-platform availability, features, and user interface. Ultimately, the decision depends on your personal preferences and needs.