Apple Music vs Spotify: Which Is The Best Music Streaming Platform?

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Which app is more worth your money?

Are you an Apple Music or Spotify listener? Here, we take a look at several criteria to (hopefully) settle the Apple Music vs Spotify 2018 debate once and for all.

Apple Music vs Spotify 2018

Which has a better music library?

As of this writing*, Spotify has over 30 million songs in its ever-growing library, adding about 20,000 new songs every day. There are so many songs on Spotify that there are millions of that have never been played even once!

But if that sounds impressive, Apple Music has an even more extensive music library, with over 40 million songs. Apple has more exclusives with popular artists, and integrates whatever music you already had in your iTunes library seamlessly into your Apple Music library.

The winner: Apple Music

Apple Music vs Spotify: Which Is The Best Music Streaming Platform?

Which has better music discovery?

Spotify has a bevvy of features designed to curate playlists based on your listening behaviour. You have playlists like Release Radar, Discovery Weekly, Daily Mixes, and other personalised playlists.

While Spotify relies heavily on sophisticated algorithms, Apple Music, on the other hand, takes a more human approach. Users are asked to select their favourite artists when they create an account so that the platform can get a sense of their preferences. Apple Music also has a Beats 1 Radio function, which is basically a 24-hour live radio run by in-house DJs and artists. Apple Music also lets you type lyrics to search for songs you don't know the title of (or songs you forgot the name of), which makes it easier for you to look for music.

Though Apple Music's expertly curated playlists and radio stations are fricking awesome, they currently can't match Spotify's algorithm-based personalised playlists (e.g. Discovery Weekly).

The winner: Spotify

Which has better social features?

Spotify lets you follow friends, see what they're listening to, and also see who they follow. The platform also lets you create and follow playlists created by friends, as well as share your listening activities on social media.

Apple Music also lets you connect with your friends, and while its social media integration isn't as sophisticated as Spotify's, artists are more active on Apple Music. It has a cool Connect function that gives fans exclusive access to their favourite artists, who can share anything from behind-the-scenes photos to video sneak peeks. Users can also interact with artists via comments on the artist's posts, which can also be shared on social media.

The winner: Draw

Which is more affordable?

Apple Music and Spotify Premium cost about the same, at around S$10 a month. Both platforms also offer family packs for up to six accounts for S$15 a month.

New Apple Music users can use the platform for three months for free, which is a great way to chip away at Spotify's users, but here's the thing: Apple Music doesn't have a free tier like Spotify. Most of Spotify's users listen to music for free, which is the main reason why the platform has a much bigger user base than Apple Music.

Winner: Spotify

Apple Music vs Spotify: Which Is The Best Music Streaming Platform?

Which offers a better user experience?

Even though Apple is known for its intuitive user interface, Apple Music is still a little clunky, and the Android version of the app is different from the iOS version, plus, the app works much better on iOS. Meanwhile, Spotify is pretty much the same on all devices.

Winner: Spotify

Which offers better offline downloads?

This one's easy. Apple Music lets you download music up to 100,000 songs on TEN different devices, while Spotify "only" lets you download up to 10,000 songs on five devices. 

Winner: Apple Music

The final verdict

Obviously, if you want a free platform, Spotify's the way to go. But if you're willing to pay, it depends on what you're looking for. Generally, Spotify is the superior app due to its personalisation and ease-of-use, but Apple Music's larger music library and exclusive content make the newer platform a good choice.

Apple Music vs Spotify 2018: Which is your streaming app of choice?

*This Apple Music vs Spotify 2018 article was written in December 2018.