Opinion: Why Spotify outplays Apple Music

Alex Jones, Columnist

Spotify is the dominant music streaming services.

Since its U.S. debut, Spotify has quickly become a smash hit in the music streaming industry and captured the hearts of music lovers worldwide.

The savvy streaming service rapidly changed the way people listen to, discover and share music. Since 2015, Apple, which has been known as a mogul in the music industry, has continually tried to edge out Spotify with their own streaming service, Apple Music.

David Pakman, former CEO of eMusic, spoke with CNN about the war between Spotify and Apple Music. “Spotify… had a great headstart and built a great product,” Pakman said. 

Spotify was founded by CEO, Daniel Ek and Martin Lorentzon in Stockholm, Sweden in 2006. The app officially launched in 2008 and was originally only available in Europe, until it was later brought to the U.S. in 2011. Spotify was the first music app of its kind and is still considered the pioneer of

music streaming today.

“For Spotify, we started off being a utility to play music and we’re now becoming an experience for every moment of your life,” Ek said in an interview with Bloomberg. 

Although Apple has made some serious strides in competing with the more experienced Spotify, it ultimately falls short for a variety of reasons. 

Spotify’s user interface far exceeds that of Apple Music’s on both mobile and desktop. Users want to, and should be able to, navigate their music with ease. That is exactly what Spotify’s well-organized, user-friendly interface has to offer. 

“One of the most precious commodities we have is our time. So if we make it convenient for people to do things, I think there’s a huge market in that for everything,” Ek said in an interview with CBS. 

According to Spotify, all 71 million of their subscribers have the ability to navigate over 35 million songs through a user-friendly navigation bar. Here, listeners can easily locate their music and their playlists, or they can venture off and find new music under the browse, search and radio tabs. 

These easy-to-access features are why many prefer Spotify over Apple Music. 

“I’ve just been using Spotify for a while, like back when it was lime-green and I just didn’t really care about Apple Music,” Ryan Moon, sophomore, said. 

Moon isn’t alone in his streaming preference. Nick Vega of Business Insider was a Spotify subscriber for two years but after switching to Apple Music, he was less than impressed.

“When Apple Music first came out in summer 2015, I did the three-month free trial but I ditched the app after the first day because it was just a headache to use,” Vega said in a column last April. “Though the interface is now much better than I remembered, there is still a learning curve. Unlike Spotify, which brings you to its home screen full of playlists and albums when you open the app, Apple Music starts you at your library. In my case, my library was empty, and I had to figure out how to fill it.”

Under browse, Spotify has a Discover Weekly playlist made for users to help them find new music based off of what is already saved in their library. This discovery feature allows for a much quicker and easier library expansion than Apple Music has to offer. The Spotify team has done an impeccable job incorporating a plethora of features into a simple and effective interface.

Trey Webb, sophomore, has been a Spotify subscriber for four years.

“Spotify is the superior app for music,” Webb said. “The song selection is very easy.”

Not only does Spotify allow you to continually discover new music through its fresh, accessible interface, but it also outshines Apple Music in terms of subscription offers.

As for price, both services offer a single plan of $9.99 per month, family plan with up to six accounts for $14.99 a month and a student plan for $4.99 a month. With that being said, Spotify users don’t have to upgrade to a paid account plan unless they choose to. Whereas with Apple Music, users only get a three-month free trial and then have to keep paying in order to keep streaming.

However, if a user does choose to pay for their music streaming, Spotify is the obvious choice when considering everything it has to offer, especially for students. Premium for students is only $4.99 per month and to top that sweet deal off, back in September 2017, Spotify teamed up with Hulu to offer students both apps for that same rate of $4.99. It doesn’t get much better than that for a college student, ballin’ on a budget. 

According to Webb, he thoroughly enjoys the Spotify and Hulu duo.

“It’s fantastic, a real easy way to relax,” Webb said.

At the end of the day, the methods in which people stream their music are entirely up to them. With that being said, they shouldn’t settle for less. Music lovers deserve the best in the industry, which is undoubtedly Spotify. Current Apple Music users may want to reconsider and make the switch to the king of streaming. 

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