8 Best Spotify Alternatives You Can Try in 2024

In Short
  • Spotify does not pack a lot of features that some of its alternatives does, like Lossless and Dolby Atmos support.
  • Apple Music is probably the most value-for-money Spotify alternative.
  • Meanwhile, Tidal offers the best audio quality, SoundCloud is the best to discover new artists, and so on.

Spotify has been in the spotlight for all the wrong reasons recently, like when they removed way too many useful features from the free version for some users. This automatically acted as a “push” for a lot of users (including me), who then started looking for alternatives to Spotify. Or, maybe you are just looking for music streaming services that support high-res audio. And if that’s why you are here, you are probably in the same boat as me. In the quest to find good streaming services like Spotify, we explore the best possible options out there right here. So, without any further ado, let’s get to the list.

Note: All the music streaming service mentioned on this list have web players. So, if you mostly listen to music on your Windows PC or Mac, you can simply use a web browser in case they don’t have dedicated apps for these two platforms.

1. Apple Music

I have been using YouTube Music for almost a year now and got comfortable with it. Then, a couple of months ago, this friend of mine suggested shifting to Apple Music. When I asked him why, all he said was “lossless audio.”

And that’s how I ended up starting my Apple Music free trial, and now, I know that I won’t cancel it. Plus, I really started to like and use the Live Radio panel a lot! The radio integration allows you to create stations out of any track, alongside letting you tune into some old-fashioned 24/7 radio stations.

Apple Music Android app interface

I also noticed the difference in audio quality. Apple Music just delivered the absolute best possible audio quality, thanks to lossless and Hi-Res support. You can go from lossy 256kbps to 24-bit lossless recordings at 48KHz, to even 24-bit H-Res lossless recordings at 192KHz.

Spotify still doesn’t have Lossless format support, by the way. The music aficionado in me was also happy to know that you can check listening statistics with Apple Music Replay at any time, unlike Spotify Wrapped and YouTube Recap ‘yearly’ rollouts.

Additionally, if you’re on an iPhone, you will be able to make use of the karaoke-like Apple Music Sing Along feature. Moreover, on an iPhone, you can also download any track from the platform and set it as your alarm or alert tone. Oh, and it also has a huge library of music videos and you can make playlists out of them too!

If you are in the Apple ecosystem, it understandably makes more sense to switch over. Especially, since just by getting Apple One, you get complimentary access to not just Apple Music, but iCloud+, Apple TV+, Arcade, and a lot more. Hands down, it is one of the best Spotify alternatives for Apple fans.

Clean and aesthetic UINo free ad-supported tier
Lossless and spatial audio supportNo yearly tier
Free trial available
Apple Music Replay available year-round
Live Radio

Price: Starts at $10.99/month (1-month free trial) | Get free access to it with Apple One which starts from $19.95/month)
Platforms: iOS, Windows, Android

2. Tidal

One name that constantly popped up in my searches while I was researching Spotify alternatives is Tidal. Unfortunately, many users like me will have to take the VPN route to make it work in India. However, once you finally get to use the service, you will have nothing but good things to say about it.

First and foremost, you get to see a free version with “limited ads.” These 30-second ads are indeed limited and barely interfere with music listening. That is not something I can say about Spotify, as the free version is terrible in this regard.

Tidal Android app interface

If you’re willing to pay the bucks, the Hi-Res FLAC audio support with the Tidal HiFi Plus membership is unparalleled and makes it stand out. However, the free version offers quite a few features too. Moods and Activities is a great panel to explore if you’re hitting the gym or trying to work to some soothing music.

My go-to tab on the platform is Tidal Rising, which features a lot of underrated artists that I’m glad to have come across. Besides, once you use Tidal quite a bit, a new My Mix section pops out of nowhere to give your listening habits the eargasm that they deserve.

Most importantly, it’s an artist-first platform and promotes artist empowerment, which is commendable. Moreover, users can also take to the Tidal X program to get access to exclusive content from such artists.

In addition, I have got to say that the app interface is amazing and easy to navigate, unlike the likes of YouTube Music. The only downside is that you don’t get Spotify Wrapped-like yearly statistics. That is something that a lot of people, including me, look forward to. So, that’s a bit of a bummer. Keeping that aside, Tidal is definitely a great Spotify alternative to use.

Free tier with limited adsHi-Res FLAC limited to expensive, top-most tier
Hi-Res Lossless audio support
Custom Mixes are great
Great library
Easy to explore underrated artists

Price: Free tier available | Paid plans start at $10.99
Platforms: Android, iOS, Windows, macOS

3. Deezer

When I dug deeper into the world of Spotify alternatives, I found out that Deezer had over 9 million subscribers. That is far from being a small number and as I started using it, the overall funky design theme all over instantly had me hooked.

The music library is also commendable and gave back results for almost any song I could think of. I also noticed how clean it all looked. On top of that, unlike most of the music streaming services out there, Deezer provides you with your yearly listening statistics which they call My Deezer Year.

Deezer web player interface

The sound quality is also top-notch, thanks to built-in High Fidelity audio support. There’s an inbuilt HiFi library as well, which lets you play FLAC tracks at 16-bit/44kHz. Although there is a free version, it is more of a way to just explore the Deezer library as you only get to listen to 30-second previews.

The platform also uses AI to give you Deezer Flow, which analyzes what you listen to and creates this incredible mix or playlist out of it. You also get lyrics on the screen like Spotify, so that’s good. My favorite Deezer feature has to be Shaker though, which lets you invite friends and generate a custom playlist based on everyone’s listening habits. Great way of keeping fights over that aux cable at bay.

And, if you’re getting bored, Deezer lets you create music trivia quizzes out of your playlists. There are created quizzes too which you can either play solo or with friends.

Getting a Premium plan is a must with Deezer. If you ask me, it is surely worth it, and easily an amazing Spotify alternative to recommend.

Premium plans have in-built HiFi for FLACFree version only offers 30-second previews of tracks
Upbeat and funky design
My Deezer Year feature
Great student discounts

Price: Plans start at $11.99/month | 1-month free trial
Platforms: Android, iOS, Windows & Mac

4. YouTube Music

Being in India, YouTube Music is the best possible Spotify alternative for me. I mean, I’m paying for YouTube Premium and getting complimentary access to YouTube Music Premium. That in itself is a big win in my opinion.

However, it is not exactly an ideal move if you only want to listen to high-quality music as Apple Music is cheaper than YouTube Premium. Plus, YouTube Music does not offer nearly as good sound quality as Apple Music, thanks-no-thanks to the lack of Hi-Res audio support.

YouTube Music Android app interface

However, what I like about YouTube Music is that you can find ANY track that comes to mind and enjoy up to 256Kbps AAC audio bit rates. You’re basically using the YouTube data, which is well, endless. You will find songs that are deeply buried under the unforgiving rock of underratedness.

Talking about the good, you get Spotify Wrapped-like statistics in the form of YouTube Music Recap. In addition, the variety of different personalized mixes and Super mixes that you get are icing on the cake. You can also pause your YT Music search and watch history, for added convenience.

In addition to all that, you can create custom Radio stations, use the Google Clock app to set a track from the platform as your alarm tune, make use of the integrated Google Cast support, and even take to the web version to upload your own tracks to your YT Music library. Then, you can even access these tracks via your mobile app. Super cool, eh?

The best thing about YouTube Music is that if you are okay with ads, you don’t have to get the Premium version and skip through ads. You can simply use the free version, and it even allows you to specifically choose a particular track, unlike some of the other options on this list.

Free version doesn’t allow music listening with the screen turned offCons
Massive music libraryFree version doesn’t allow music listening with screen turned off
Free with YouTube PremiumUser interface may seem complex at first
Personalized recommendations and mixesNo Lossless audio support
Individual yearly plan available
YouTube Music Recap

Price: Free tier available | Paid plans start at $10.99/month | Also free with YouTube Premium which starts at $13.99/month
Platforms: Android, iOS

5. Amazon Music

Since I use Prime actively, I automatically had to make use of Amazon Music. Something that I immediately liked was how exciting the FIND section of the app was. A lot of times, you can get too tired of listening to the same playlists over and over again.

For example, I found myself heading over to the Moods panel of this section and browsing through the different playlists offered. Moreover, thanks to Lossless HD support, the audio quality across Amazon Music is just…chef’s kiss.

Amazon Music Android app interface

Most importantly, the whooping music library consisting of 100 million songs is completely free to Prime members, which is the right kind of bonus. You also get access to a bunch of Podcasts which is the cherry on top.

Most importantly, if you are already knee-deep in the Amazon ecosystem, it just makes more sense to use Amazon Music. The in-built Alexa comes in way more handy that way, letting you cast your music onto your Amazon devices. While it’s no Spotify Connect, it’s a useful feature nevertheless.

However, do note that to get the best experience, get Amazon Music Unlimited. Prime Music which is bundled with Amazon Prime does not offer Lossless format support. Moreover, Music Unlimited gives you access to Spatial Audio with Dolby Atmos or 360 Reality Audio. As for the quality of these tracks, the Music Unlimited plan lets you listen to at least 16-bit 44.1kHz at around 850 kbps.

In addition, it lets you stream Ultra HD audio tracks too with an average bitrate of a whopping 3730kbps. In other words, Spotify doesn’t come remotely close to delivering the audio quality that Amazon Music Unlimited does.

I had a great time with Amazon Music and would definitely recommend it as one of the best Spotify alternatives for you to use.

Lossless HD and Hi-Res audio supportRecommendations are not that good
Attractive UI
Alexa integration
3-months free trial
Free ad-supported tier is available

Price: Free tier available | Amazon Music Unlimited plans start at $10.99/month (3-months free trial) | Prime Music Free with Amazon Prime which starts at $14.99
Platforms: Android, iOS

6. Pandora

Of all the options that I have mentioned in this list, I think Pandora has the most ancient-looking UI. However, I had actually kind of let that fool me as I didn’t have a lot of expectations going on. I was so wrong. Pandora is indeed a musical box of surprises. There’s basically no loading time and the app is super snappy as there’s not a whole lot going.

Pandora Android app interface

However, the great thing is that if you are okay with ads, the free version is enough for day-to-day needs. To play selective songs, albums or playlists for a limited time, you just need to watch a short ad and that’s it.

Sadly, just like Tidal, Indian users won’t be able to use it without a VPN. Something that I missed on Pandora was Tidal’s Lossless audio. Still, the AAC+ audio quality is enough to get by. Free users can listen at a fixed 64 kbps AAC+, while users of the paid plan can choose between a range of 32 kbps AAC+ to 192 kbps MP3.

Pandora doesn’t offer music videos of any sort though like some mentions on this list. However, it does offer you a personalized listening experience as well with the Tune Your Station tab. If you want to explore and pop out of your music bubble, there’s a Discover tab for it, which is my favorite. Meanwhile, you can also keep up with the latest trends in music with the Crowd Faves station.

For every track that you listen to, Pandora lets you in on the lyrics at the bottom alongside recommendations, most of which turn out to be great and align with your music taste. It did for me, at least. If you want a more personalized experience as well as an insane amount of radio stations, Pandora over Spotify any day.

Besides, there are not a whole lot of affordable Spotify alternatives out there, and Pandora is one of the rare few. Besides, it does more than just getting the job done and I had a good time with even the free version. An easy recommendation.

Paid plans are affordableUI looks very outdated
Free tier provides a lot of featuresNo Lossless audio support
Great for podcasts

Price: Free tier available | Paid plans start at $4.99/month (1-month free trial)
Platforms: Android, iOS

7. SoundCloud

If you are a budding artist who wants his or her music to be heard, SoundCloud is a great platform for that. Moreover, you can do a lot of things on the platform being a free user. What I really like is how you can make use of the platform as both a listener and a creator, depending on the kind of subscription you want to go with.

This ensures that you don’t end up paying for things you don’t want. Instead, it brings a specialized experience for you to the table, depending on what you want from the platform. Also, like Spotify, SoundCloud brings a daily mix to the table for more personalized listening. In addition, you also get to see existing playlists to fit your mood, which is always welcome.

SoundCloud Android app interface

If you are looking for a Spotify alternative that allows you to do some decent music streaming, you will need to go with the SoundCloud Go plans. Meanwhile, if you are a creator, you will need to get the SoundCloud Next series of plans. The good thing is that SoundCloud Next is free and all you need to do is sign up. Using the plan, you can upload up to 3 hours of audio with a maximum file size of 4GB.

What I like best about SoundCloud is that it opens the doors for infinite different artists that won’t appear on Spotify. Unofficial remixes, mashups, fusions, collaborations, you name it and SoundCloud has it.

SoundCloud lets users drop likes and comments on tracks, which gives creators some solid feedback and an understanding of what their listeners want. Creators can also view Insights for their uploaded tracks, getting a quick look at how the tracks are doing on the platform.

The SoundCloud Go+ plan lets users stream up to 256 kbps AAC, which is alright, but not lossless. While you can upload in the WAV, FLAC, AIFF, or ALAC formats, it won’t be available to users to listen to in that format, which is a bummer.

If you are on the lookout for niche and underrated artists, nothing beats SoundCloud. What’s more is that you can also mix tracks using the SoundCloud Go+ or SoundCloud DJ plans as they bring DJ tools integration to the table.

SoundCloud DJ featureFirst time users can get confused with the interface
Creator-specific tools
Best to discover niche artists and music

Price: Free tier with SoundCloud Next | Paid plans start from $4.99/month
Platforms: Android, iOS, Windows

8. JioSaavn

Being in India, I have relied on JioSaavn a lot for quite a few years and had a good experience with it. The reason behind that is the kind of a catalog JioSaavn offers in India is pretty versatile. Although it is mostly for Bollywood music enthusiasts, it still can cater to those like me who have an inclination towards Western music. Additionally, it also packs millions of tracks across 15 regional Indian languages.

JioSaavn Android app interface

Besides, you get personalized playlists and while they’re not as good as the other mentions on this list, they’re decent enough. The paid version lets you listen to HQ tracks at 320 kbps bitrate, while the free version limits you to 160 kbps. You also get much-needed features like artist radio, offline playlists, lyrics integration, and squeeze the utility out of it.

The paid version also lets you access the same account from 5 different devices, which is great, especially if you want to share it with your friends and family. Most importantly, those living in India don’t even have to get JioSaavn separately as it comes bundled with Reliance Jio plans. That is another thing to note.

When I used a VPN to get into the U.S. catalog, I got an idea of what the music streaming service was trying to do for those living there; trying to give them a bit of a home-away-from-home feeling. So, the catalog there caters to mostly Indian music, and that versatility is missing.

Then again, if you are living in the US and want to listen to some Bollywood music, that’s all you need. Definitely the best Spotify alternative if you specifically want to listen to Bollywood music.

Ad-supported free tier availableSignificantly more expensive in the states
Super affordable for Indian usersNot-so-versatile catalogue for non-Indian users
Best Bollywood music catalogue

Price: Free tier available for Indian users | Price starts at Rs. 99/month for Indian users, $4.99/month for U.S. users
Platforms: Android, iOS, Windows

With that, we have reached our end of this list. See, all these Spotify alternatives are cool in their own ways and it all comes down to which suits your taste and preferences the best. For me, Apple Music, YouTube Music, and Amazon Music hit the spot as they are not just economical, but bring a lot of value to the table.

Not just that, they are bundled with broader services that cater to a lot more of my needs than just music streaming. What about you? Which is your go-to alternative and why? Let me know in the comments down below!

comment Comments 5
  • Tam says:

    You should add as a con of YouTube Music that you can’t lock the screen on your phone while listening. it automatically stops the music. Paid version removes this problem. It’s a pretty big con if you ask me.

  • M says:

    Not giving my hard earned money to a corp co that doesn’t believe in freedom of speech. Freedom of choice. Nope. Done.

  • ronda says:

    I just left Spotify because when I wanted to listen to my downloaded music offline it was gone. This has happened several times. Useless POS! I downgraded my subscription to free but I can still use premium till my month is up.

  • Brainfreeze says:

    I use Spotify. I have a premium account. I hate Spotify. 1st issue: their user interface, their application, is garbage. It is wrong in all the wrong ways. Whoever designed it knows very little about music and nothing about ergonomics. AND they’re smug about it. They think their doggy-doo of an app is unrivaled, beyond reproach, and never needs any modification now or in the future, ever. Their customer service people are unwaveringly both smug and condescending. Without exception. That’s a corporate culture issue, and for a corporation that is so very awful at writing computer programs you’d think they wouldn’t be such jerks about it, but they are. I want out and i’m looking for alternatives. Writing programs with a good interface doesn’t have to take a lot of work, but it does take not being a moron.

    • Jordan says:

      I’m going to print out this comment and frame it. You nailed it 100%. I’m leaving in November when my plan is up.

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