• Adventures in Android Music Streaming



    Spoiler alert: Spotify is the clear winner, at least for me.

    I suspect that hardcore music enthusiasts who use Android will have already chosen their music streaming service; for anyone else thinking about which one is worth paying for, here's a summary of my own experiences with three popular apps.

    Amazon Music
    If you have Amazon Prime then you've also got Amazon Prime Music, the ad-free version of their streaming service. Their music catalogue seems fine, and the Android app can also cast to Android TV. Unfortunately their web player requires Flash, which tends to slow down my already taxed Chrome browser.

    Google Play Music
    If you want PC playback of your streaming music then Google is your obvious choice, with a web player that's optimized for Chrome and an Android app that effortlessly casts to Android TV. And if you wanted an ad-free YouTube experience then the paid version of Google Play Music would also be the obvious choice, as a subscription also includes YouTube Red. Unfortunately that perk is not yet available to those of us living in Canada.

    Nonetheless, I took a 30-day free trial of Google Play Music, in the hopes that YouTube Red would one day make its way here. That would have been the end of the story, but my girlfriend suggested that I try out some other services before committing to GPM. That turned out to be some excellent advice.

    Spotify
    With some 70 million registered users Spotify is far and away the world's most popular music streaming service. They also offer a 30-day free trial, so I signed up with the intention of doing some A/B testing between Spotify and Google Play Music, and see if I could stump either one with a random music request.

    The track that tipped the scales in favour of Spotify was this very random Japanese single that showed up in the girlfriend's YouTube feed. I'm guessing that it translates to The Futon Song...?



    Bizarre, right? Anyway, Spotify has this track; Google Play Music does not. Advantage: Spotify. And then I discovered that Spotify also has native clients for Debian, Linux Mint and Ubuntu. Game over; Spotify wins.

    Hopefully this little write-up will be of use to someone who's not yet decided on an Android music streaming service. Feel free to add your own insights and/or opinions directly below.

    Play Store links: Amazon Music, Google Play Music, Spotify

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    This article was originally published in forum thread: Adventures in Android Music Streaming started by acurrie View original post
    Comments 4 Comments
    1. Ipse's Avatar
      Ipse -
      You are not alone....Spotify also has clients for my Samsung Smart speakers and works with Alexa and FireTV. Game over.
    1. kansanian's Avatar
      kansanian -
      Sigh. No mention of Napster.

      Long time subscriber to it. I don't care how hip Spotify is, I still prefer the way Napster (formerly Rhapsody) lets one navigate. Spotify is still jumbled and messy to me, in comparison.

      Either of them vs. the others? Obviously, neither Google or Amazon is anywhere near the same by comparison.

      I just wonder why Napster gets sidelined in favor of Spotify so often when they've been doing it longer, and have a few points in their favor.

      Oh, and my yearly subscription costs less than any of the others :P
    1. good4life's Avatar
      good4life -
      Tried Spotify for three months after Microsoft Groove shut down. Given how I use a streaming service (radio feature), I found Spotify to be pretty difficult to use. But after two months, I got use to it with one exception. There is no filter for explicit language. And after doing some research, I found that this feature has been requested for years with no response from Spotify as to whether it would be included. This is an enormous fail in my opinion as I use streaming for my business and random f*** bombs is just unacceptable. I can't imagine anyone using Spotify that have children, unless the parents don't mind explicit language with their kids. So, I've gone back to Pandora for my daily use.

      Sent from my Z981 using HoFo mobile app
    1. Vertabrae's Avatar
      Vertabrae -
      Quote Originally Posted by good4life View Post
      Tried Spotify for three months after Microsoft Groove shut down. Given how I use a streaming service (radio feature), I found Spotify to be pretty difficult to use. But after two months, I got use to it with one exception. There is no filter for explicit language. And after doing some research, I found that this feature has been requested for years with no response from Spotify as to whether it would be included. This is an enormous fail in my opinion as I use streaming for my business and random f*** bombs is just unacceptable. I can't imagine anyone using Spotify that have children, unless the parents don't mind explicit language with their kids.
      Totally agree.

      I also have requested this (from Napster), and also requested a filter for lyrics in general. Even Pandora lacks this, and with all their music genome stuff they should be able to do this. I need no words when I am working, studying, reading, or trying to get to sleep.

      I use Amazon Music since it is already paid for with Prime, and Rhapsody/Napster since I got it free with T-Mobile Simple Choice some years back. I need an ad free experience but it is currently not in the budget to pay for another service. If one of them actually put in a lyrics or even an explicit lyrics filter, that might change.