Step right up and join the debate, folks. Is Spotify free enough for you? Wondering if it’s worth investing in a subscription? It’s definitely a valid concern—Spotify offers an extensive collection of songs for streaming, for free. But what about those other features?
The music streaming giant has two options: Spotify Free and Spotify Premium. In this article, we’ll weigh the pros and cons of both so you can decide if it’s worth signing up for a paid plan. Answering this question might seem simple but it isn’t; there are a few factors to consider beyond just price.
From offline listening to top-of-the-line sound quality and more, let’s explore what both versions of Spotify have to offer. Whether you’re considering upgrading or just want an overview of the differences between the two plans, stick around to learn more.
Table of contents
Spotify Free: What You Get and Limitations
We all know the feeling—after listening to the same dozen songs over and over on Spotify Free, it’s time to switch things up. But before you go ahead and upgrade to Spotify Premium, let’s take a step back and talk about what you get with the free version.
With Spotify Free, you have access to millions of songs and podcasts on demand, with no ads when streaming through your computer or laptop. You also have the ability to create playlists for offline listening. However, there are some limitations:
- You can only skip 6 songs per hour per device
- You cannot listen offline on mobile devices (except for tablets)
- You cannot listen to podcasts offline
- Your listening is relatively limited by the lack of features such as higher-quality audio streaming or improved audio controls.
So if you’re looking for more features or want to go beyond the occasional ‘skip song’ limitation, then upgrading might be right for you. We’ll talk about that more in the next paragraph.
Spotify Premium: Benefits and Features
So, what makes Spotify Premium worth the extra cash? There are plenty of reasons to upgrade from the free version of Spotify. First of all, you have access to millions of songs and podcasts on demand, with no ads or commercial interruptions. If you’re a true music lover, being able to listen to your favourite tracks without any distractions can be priceless—especially if you’re in the mood for a marathon listening session.
Plus, with Spotify Premium you get higher-quality audio streams and advanced features like offline listening. This means that you can save your favourite playlists and stream them while not connected to the internet—no more finding yourself without a signal at an inconvenient moment.
It’s also worth noting that Spotify Premium gives you exclusive content and discounts on subscriptions to services like Hulu in certain countries. So if you already have a subscription or want one, it might be worth upgrading for this reason alone.
Music Discovery: How Free and Premium Compare
Curious about how the two types of Spotify compare with music discovery? There’s a lot to be said about the difference between free and premium when it comes to discovering new music. Let’s break it down.
The amount of playlists you can access on the platform is much more limited with a free subscription. With Spotify Free, you can access only 15 curated playlists to help get you started, like Discover Weekly or Daily Mixes. But with Premium, you unlock a world of possibilities, including all of those curated playlists plus tons of user-generated ones that are always changing.
A free subscription will get you access to unlimited radio stations based on your favourite artists or songs in a genre. But that’s where your discovery journey ends—there’s no option for creating custom stations like with a Premium account, so it makes it difficult to find music outside of your usual tastes.
Another perk Premium subscribers have over free users is recommendations. With Spotify Free, recommendations are fairly generic—you’ll get options based on your past listening habits but not much else. With a Premium membership, though, recommendations become more personalized and tailored towards your tastes as the app gets to know what kinds of artists and genres you like best over time.
Overall, if you’re serious about discovering new music and branching out beyond what you already know and love, then a Premium subscription is definitely worth considering—it gives you access to a whole world of possibilities compared to the limited features in Spotify Free!
Sound Quality: Free vs Premium Streaming
Sound quality is one of the major differences between free and premium streaming on Spotify. With Spotify Free, you get a compressed audio quality that’s adequate, but not amazing. With Spotify Premium, you get access to higher-quality audio streaming—lossless songs and even higher-definition streaming options such as High Fidelity and Hi-Fi.
Spotify Premium gives you access to over 50 million songs that have been recorded in CD quality or higher as lossless (or “CD Quality”) tracks. This means when you stream them on premium, you’ll be getting a much better audio experience. You’ll also be able to skip more tracks—on Free, you can only skip up to 6 times per hour per station or playlist.
Higher-definition streaming options
Spotify Premium also gives you access to higher definition streams—High Fidelity, which streams at 320 Kbps, and Hi-Fi, which streams at up to 900 Kbps Master Quality Authenticated (MQA) audio files. This means Spotify Premium users can experience an even higher level of sound quality than the usual crisp 320 Kbps offered by MP3s, meaning your earbuds are going to be buzzing with extra vibrancy and depth.
Offline Listening: Only With Premium
You may not know, but with Spotify, listening offline is only possible with a Premium subscription. With Spotify Free, you can still listen online, but you can’t download music to your device to listen later.
Spotify Premium allows you to download up to 10,000 songs per device and up to five different devices. That means if your device ever dies or if you just need some peace and quiet away from WiFi or cellular networks, you can still access your favourite music without needing an internet connection.
Premium also lets you choose the quality of audio when listening offline. You can choose between low, normal and high-quality audio settings – just keep in mind that the higher your audio settings are the more storage it will take up on your device.
When comparing the features of Spotify Free vs Spotify Premium – offline listening is one of the biggest perks that comes with Premium. And for anyone who travels a lot or needs access to their music even when they’re out of network range – Offline Listening is definitely worth paying for.
Verdict: Is Spotify Premium Worth the Money?
When it comes to the debate about whether or not Spotify Premium is worth the money, it really depends on you and your needs. The differences between Spotify Free and Spotify Premium might not be huge, but they might be enough for you to choose the paid subscription.
Ultimately, if you’re someone who values stream quality, access to podcasts, offline listening capabilities and ad-free music – then Spotify Premium is certainly worth the money. However, if these features don’t matter much to you and you simply want access to Spotify’s library of music – then a free subscription will work just fine.
So what are some of the differences between Spotify Free and Premium? Let’s take a look:
- Stream Quality: With Spotify Free, your song streams will be at a lower quality than Premium which offers higher-quality sound files for a much clearer listening experience.
- Ad-Free Listening: No ads with Spotify Premium so you can get straight into your music without any interruptions – perfect if you listen for hours on end!
- Offline Listening: With a premium subscription, you can download songs and albums so that your music is easily accessible even without an Internet connection – perfect for those long plane trips or waiting room waits!
- Access to Podcasts & Download Options: With Premium, users don’t just get access to 40 million songs but also podcasts as well as the ability to download their music for offline listening anytime they want.
At the end of the day, only you can decide whether or not paying for a premium subscription is worth it for you – but remember that even if you find that all these features aren’t necessary for your routine listening habits, having them can provide an enhanced experience that may be worth considering in the long run!
In conclusion, Spotify Free and Spotify Premium both offer fantastic advantages for music lovers and streamers. While Spotify Premium has more features and benefits, the cost might not be worth it for some people. With Spotify Free, you’ll get access to a massive library of music, podcasts, and other audio content, so you’ll never have to worry about running out of tunes to listen to. Think wisely before investing in Spotify Premium, or just stick with the free option and be sure to take advantage of all its features.