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Monday, March 13, 2017

Music Streaming

Remember the age when we bought digital downloads of music, or better yet, physical CDs? The idea of purchasing music has recently been replaced by a cheaper alternative: streaming.  Apple Music, Google Play, Spotify, and Pandora are some of the most popular services I’ve encountered. Although I’ve dealt with pesky ads interrupting my music, I’ve enjoyed expanding my musical knowledge through the personalized features that accompany these apps. Here’s my run-down on each of these websites/apps, and which ones might be worth investing in for the premium service.

 Pandora and I go way back. I’ve had an account for five years now, and the more music I listen to, the better Pandora caters to my taste. You can create a playlist for an artist, song, or album, and Pandora will play that music and similar music. The ads are infrequent, perhaps playing 3 to 4 times an hour, and you do have a limited number of skips. But let me tell you, Pandora is an awesome place to expand your musical familiarity, as it introduced me to many of my favorite songs and singers. The premium service, Pandora One, has no ads and more skips, costing $4.99 per month.

   


      Apple Music (not to be mistaken with iTunes), is a recent feature that Apple added to their interface. You can stream unlimited music for $9.99 per month, as opposed to paying the (rather pricey) $1.29 per song on iTunes these 
      days. While there is a cost associated with the service, Apple boasts a free 
      3-month trial period. For iPhone and Mac users, this service is convenient 
       and streamlined for listening to music.             
Google Play is like a lesser known version of Apple Music, but for Android phones. I’ve found it very similar to Pandora, in that I can stream playlists and rate songs with the same “thumb up” and “thumb down” system. While Google Play does have a free streaming feature, I think the most annoying part is that you’re required to link it to a credit card before you start streaming, something rather inconvenient if you do not own a credit card like myself! The ad-free, unlimited version is $9.99 for a monthly subscription.

    
 Spotify! This app became really big in the past year, with the notion that you can look up any song and play it on demand. Spotify allows you to listen to the exact song you want to hear, unlike the shuffle playlists on Pandora and Google Play. Here’s the thing: the Spotify ads are SUPER annoying. They play part of a song, so you start jamming along, and then you realize it’s an ad and it is ruined midway.  The premium service is $9.99 a month.

When considering the frequency/annoying nature of ads, the number of skips per hour, the song selection, and the accessibility of each of these streaming services, it seems that Pandora takes the prize for me. Pandora has always been #1 in my heart, and it appears that it will continue to do so.
How do you prefer to listen to music? Share below if you like to stream or listen to your personal library!


Written by Katia G., Homework Assistant

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