Spotify may be raising prices, here are my 3 favorite alternatives

Spotify may be raising prices, here are my 3 favorite alternatives
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Spotify is reportedly set to raise the prices again. This news from a recent Bloomberg report that cites anonymous sources who told the publication of the streaming giant’s future plans. 

According to the insiders, Spotify intends to “increase prices by about $1 to $2 a month” across five markets by April 30. These include the UK, Australia, and Pakistan. The other two regions were not mentioned. Users in the United States are slated to see the same changes, but they won’t happen until later in the year.

The reason why the company is bumping subscriptions up again is to “help cover the cost of audiobooks,” a new type of content that was introduced back in November. Bloomberg explains Spotify has to pay publishers for the books, however the platform only has so much money. They apparently need to charge more to keep them.

New tiers

Although audiobooks have proven themselves to be popular on Spotify, not everyone listens to them. For those who don’t, the company is going to add another subscription plan “that will offer music and podcasts” only, removing audiobooks as an option. This will keep the current price for individual premium plans. People who buy the new tier will have to pay for audiobooks separately.

No updates were given about the long-awaited Supremium plan. It’s presumably still in the works, and the launch of the tier may just be around the corner. A user on the truespotify subreddit shared a screenshot of what appears to be the Dolby Atmos logo appearing on the official player, indicating that spatial audio may be an upcoming feature.

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Hearing the news about yet another price yet hike will probably elicit audible groans, especially if Spotify is charging more for content you may not enjoy. If you’re not happy with the direction Spotify is taking and want an alternative, below are the best three recommendations. 

Tidal – Best overall alternative

Promotional image of Tidal working on a smartphone

(Image credit: Tidal)
  • $10.99 / £10.99 / AU$12.99 for HiFi tier 
  • $19.99 / £19.99 / AU$23.99 for HiFi Plus 

Tidal is the best alternative to Spotify for music fans. It offers great audio quality thanks to high resolution streaming, offer an easy-to-navigate UI, millions of songs, and  thousands of music videos; all for the same cost as a standard Spotify subscription. You can get CD-quality audio coming through your headphones by opting for HiFi Plus, although it is rather expensive at $20 a month. 

It’s important to mention that Tidal doesn’t have a lot of podcasts available. There are a few, but the selection pales in comparison to what Spotify has. This isn’t a big deal you’re someone who doesn’t care about podcasts and prefers music. The service, again, is meant for music aficionados who want to hear their favorite artists in an impeccable quality.

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Qobuz – Best alternative for audiophiles

Beatles' Abbey Road streaming on Qobuz, on a smartphone

(Image credit: Qobuz)
  • $12.99 / £12.99 / AU$24.99 for the Studio tier
  • $17.99 / £17.99 / AU$29.99 for Sublime plan

If you want a service that has the best audio quality out there, check out Qobuz. 

You can stream music in the 24-bit FLAC format up to 192KHz. In plain English, that means songs coming from Qobuz are better than the CD-quality tracks. It blows what Spotify has out of the water. What’s great about the service is you don’t need to pay extra for Hi-Res audio. The 24-bit FLAC format is part of the basic tier. And if you don’t want to commit to a subscription, that’s okay because you can purchase individual albums. 

It is the most expensive alternative. However, at the time of writing, the platform is offering a discount for people who buy the yearly plan. The cost comes out to $10.83 a month for a single person. Similar to Tidal, Quboz lacks podcasts. Again, it’s aimed at music fans. 

YouTube Music – Best content alternative

YouTube Music

(Image credit: YouTube)
  • $10.99 / £10.99 for YouTube Music Premium.
  • In Australia, it’s a part of YouTube Premium which is $16.99

YouTube Music is an underrated service. Not enough people give it the credit it deserves as a music streaming platform. It does lack hi-res audio. The stream quality on YouTube Music is the same as on Spotify, however, it excels in other areas.

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The content library on YouTube Music eclipses what you find on its rival. You get millions of songs, tons of podcasts, and a wide assortment of audiobooks, all for free. Plus, you can control what you listen to at any given time. You won’t be forced to listen to a radio playlist.

Speaking of which, the platform has tons of playlists covering a variety of topics from favorite artists to Adult Swim bumps. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. We didn’t even mention other notable features like the ability to upload your own files, the download function, and the opportunity to find rare releases like early demos.

You can’t listen to music without a good pair of headphones. For recommendations, check out TechRadar’s list of the best headphones for 2024.

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