With music streaming becoming a popular way to listen to old and new releases, deliberation comes from what medium is best for the ultimate music experience.
Four major streaming sites that compete for business are Rdio, Pandora, 8tracks and Spotify. These sites are the most used, each with their own individual benefit and overlap.
The sites are free to anyone, but, thanks to tagline ads, are transitioning from free to paid.
Rdio says, “Stations are always free. If you want more, Rdio Unlimited lets you listen to playlists, albums and songs, online or off.”
Pandora says, “No ads. Enjoy your personalized radio completely free of all ads. More skips. Hear the music or comedy you want with more daily skips. Fewer timeouts. Listen for longer periods of time without the worry of your station pausing. Plus more!”
8tracks says, “Subscribers to 8tracks Plus get a completely ad-free experience. We sell ads on 8tracks to keep the service free for everyone. But if you want to remove ads, or if you just want to show us your support, you can subscribe to 8tracks Plus. We’ll hide the ads and love you forever.”
Spotify says, “Premium lets you play any song, anytime. You can even listen when you’re offline. No restrictions. No ads.
With the options to listen for free or subscribe for a premium account on each site, the problem comes when choosing the best and most affordable.
Spotify seems to offer the best options as far as cost and is most popular among students.
“I get to make my own playlists and listen to music I choose when I choose, not at random,” said Jesse Leon, sophomore biology major from Midlothian. “Also, Spotify has a student special, so I get to download any songs and playlists for only $5 a month. Pandora is old news.”
A premium subscription allows users to access music on their computer and as well as stream music on a mobile device. It also allows users to save and listen to music offline and make it say to share music.
“I used Pandora for a long time, and it’s great, I just wanted to be able to control my music according to what mood I’m in,” said Alli Collins, sophomore family studies major from Vista, California. “They have playlists just like Pandora that you can listen to if you’re looking for more music. Spotify lets you see what your friends are listening to, like a music feed, and your friend basically introduce you to it without knowing!”
Despite the avid support of Spotify, strong supporters of Pandora still exist.
“I use Pandora because I am a fan of many genres and artists,” said Ricky Jackson, sophomore financial management major from Angleton. “On Pandora I can pick any station based on genre, artist, or song and listen to what I want based on the mood I’m in. Plus it’s free and I am too cheap/broke to buy music so I listen for free.”