With all the music apps out there, it can be hard to hone in on why one is better than the other. If we take a brief look at the features offered on Apple Music and Spotify, perhaps that can help you decided which app is best for you.

Basic features available for free:

Both Spotify and Apple Music offer free versions, however, with only the most basic features active, while premium services are offered for a fee. Some free services include:
Spotify: play any artist, play any album, or play any playlist in shuffle mode. You merely have to suffer through the occasional ad.
Apple Music: limited radio, follow artists, limited playlists.

Premium features trial:

Premium services for both apps can be test driven for a set length of time. Spotify offers a free 30 day trial, while Apple Music offers 3 months free. Some premium features include:
Spotify: play any song on any device, be it phone, tablet or computer, no ads, offline listening.
Apple Music: unlimited radio, hand curated suggestions, unlimited streaming, offline listening
The important difference here, is Apple Music offers live radio stations with real DJs spinning records, -er – I mean, clicking on tracks. Spotify does not offer live radio but you can create playlists and listen to the on demand.

Monthly fee:

Both Spotify and Apple Music will run you AU$11.99 a month.

Music Catalog:

Both Spotify and Apple Music boast over 30 million titles, which is basically almost everything under the sun that’s ever been published in the history of recorded music. Apple Music intends to secure more exclusives from indie artists, but this is actually just a growing trend across the board, and Spotify will likely boast its own exclusives too. Usually, exclusives are just for single tracks, unreleased demos, or the occasional prerelease exclusives.

Family sharing:

If you buy song or album and want to share it with other family members, there’s no need to make the same purchase twice; just subscribe to a Family Share plan. Apple Music costs $14.99 a year for up to 6 users, while Spotify will run you AU$6 per month for each additional user. We didn’t say this, but you could also just give your login details to your other family members for $0.

Compatible devices:

Spotify has apps for Windows, Mac, PlayStation, Android, iOS and windows Phone. Apple Music works with Apple TV, iOS, Mac and Windows, with Android support due soon.

Suggested music:

You might remember the old Genius Shuffle or Genius Playlists on iTunes where the system selects songs or creates a playlist of songs for you that “sound great together”. Things have evolved a bit more since then and the new Apple Music offers better, smarter ways of discovering new tunes. When you sign up, it will ask you your preferences and then curates music for you.

Spotify on the other hand, offers a “Discover Weekly” list – a “mixtape of fresh music” selected based on what you listen to. I particularly like checking out Similar Artists and feeling like you’re uncovering hidden talent. You have to ignore the hundreds of thousands of plays a song may already have (someone knew they existed before you did), although number of plays is also a decent indicator of how good a song is.

For the Shazam-obsessed like myself, you used to be able to Shazam a song, then add to your playlist on various music apps. After updating to the latest Shazam, it appears that Apple have thrown a Starbucks and kicked out the small guy… in other words they’ve paid big money to take on the biggest real estate and all you can see is Apple Music buttons all over Shazam. If you’re looking for Spotify, it’s still there, just hidden under the drop-down arrow on the left.


Bottom Line – Spotify offers far more to do for free, while Apple Music offers full integration and uniform iOS design aesthetics. With free use and free trials, there’s no harm in trying both to see which one works best for you.

As much as we are Apple nerds at Dapper Apps, our vote goes to Spotify!

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