music apps

Top Music Streaming Apps

Whether you’re looking for some background music to study to, a throwback playlist for a long car journey, or a motivating soundtrack for exercise, these music streaming apps have you covered. 


Spotify is the most popular streaming app around today, with 286 million users each month. 

Subscription package

Price (monthly)


Spotify Free


Ad interruptions, lower quality streaming, limited song skipping, can’t play offline

Spotify Premium (most popular plan with 130 million users)


No ads, ability to download music to play offline, create and add new playlists, unlimited skipping through songs, higher quality audio

Spotify Premium Duo


Two accounts on one, no ad interruptions, ability to skip songs

Spotify Premium for Students


Identical service to Premium, just at half the price for those who can enter and validate their student information

Spotify Premium Family


Identical service to Premium, but with the ability to add up to five other people living at the same address so everyone can enjoy unlimited music


Multiple subscription options

Access to millions of songs 

Can download songs and still play them whilst not connected to the internet

Available for both iOS and Android

Less control if you don’t pay - you’ll get ads, can’t download, and can’t freely skip songs

Spotify has been around since 2008, and has since gained immense popularity, particularly amongst millennials. The service has over 40 million songs, as well as a huge collection of podcasts

The playlists can be customised to your personal preferences and taste in music. You can also browse for music in specific categories, such as “Songs to Sing in the Shower”, “Easy 00s”, “Sad Songs”, “Happy Pop Hits”, “Monday Motivation”, and “Nightcap”, to name a few. You can access playlists created by Spotify themselves, or those shared by other users.

Furthermore, Spotify is famous for its algorithms that personalise your experience. It creates Daily Mixes of your most-played tunes, as well as a Rewind playlist of past loves, and a Discover Weekly for new songs it thinks you’d enjoy. 

Find out more about what makes Spotify one of the most loved streaming platforms.

Apple Music

Launched in 2015, Apple Music is another popular streaming app with around 72 million subscribers worldwide

Subscription package

Price (monthly)


Apple Music Free Trial


Three month trial

Individual Membership


Stream 70 million songs, listen online or offline, no ads, ability to download 100,000 songs to your library, access across all devices, radio stations

Student Membership


Identical service, just for half the price if you can validate your student credentials

Family Membership


All of the individual perks, plus access for up to six accounts


Multiple subscription options and decent trial length

Access to 70 million songs

Can still play whilst not attached to Wi-Fi

Available for both iOS and Android

Works harmoniously with other Apple products

No free version outside of a trial

Limit to downloads (100,000)

Apple Music has 70 million songs for you to browse through, and while you can listen to all, if you want to listen to songs offline there is a limit of 100,000 downloads. 

This streaming service works harmoniously with all Apple products - for example, you can stream music from your Apple Watch when you’re away from your iPhone, and connect to CarPlay to listen to your playlists while travelling. Siri also works in conjunction with Apple Music, so you can play, skip, and search for music using voice commands. 

Like Spotify and other streaming apps, Apple Music creates curated playlists just for you, showcasing your favourite (or next favourite) artists. You can also listen to live radio shows. 

YouTube Music

Relaunching as a music streaming service in 2018, YouTube Music is technically the youngest music app on this list, but it’s got the backing of one of the biggest brands in the world - Google. 

Subscription package

Price (monthly)


YouTube Music Premium


Play music ad free, offline, with your phone screen off, and unlimited skipping

YouTube Music Student


Identical to Premium package, but need to verify your student information each year

YouTube Music Family


Identical service for up to five family members


All subscriptions have a one month trial

Links to YouTube platform so you can access any additional content labelled as ‘music’

Can play YouTube videos with screen off, as well as when disconnected from the internet

Available for both iOS and Android

No free version outside of a trial 

Possibility that user-uploaded content could be illegally copyrighted 

YouTube Music doesn’t specify how many songs you have access to, but you do have the whole streaming service and platform to explore - this includes everything uploaded to YouTube. Like some of the others on this list, YouTube Music also creates two main mixes based on your likes: Your Mixtape and Offline Mixtape. The Offline Mixtape is automatically downloaded for you each day, so you always have access to a fresh, new playlist while you’re out. 

Whilst not as popular as Spotify and Apple, YouTube Music still has approximately 20 million subscribers and one billion music users, with more suspected to join now Google Play Music is being removed. 

One thing to be wary of is that user-uploaded content on YouTube could be illegally copyrighted. Although you can save these tracks to playlists, they may occasionally be taken down, meaning you’ll lose them from your library. 

You can try the app out before deciding if YouTube Music is the right streaming app for you. Want to see how it stacks up vs Spotify? Our comparison review has got you covered. 

Amazon Music

Launched in 2007, Amazon Music has a total of 55 million users worldwide, as of the beginning of 2020, crawling up to rival the likes of Spotify and Apple. Amazon itself has increased in popularity due to its AI robot, Alexa.

Subscription package

Price (monthly)


Free with Prime

Free if you have Amazon Prime

Two million songs

Amazon Music Unlimited

£7.99 for Prime members

£9.99 for Non-Prime members

Unlimited access to songs, no ads, offline, unlimited skips

Amazon Music Student Plan


Same service as Unlimited, but half the price for eligible students

Amazon Music Family Plan (Prime members only)


Same service, but with up to six people

Amazon Music Single Device Plan


Ability to stream 60 million songs from an Echo (Alexa) or Fire TV


All subscriptions have a free trial (one or three months)

Discounts for Prime members

Links to other Amazon devices

Available for both iOS and Android

No free version outside of a trial

 Prime members still have to pay for access to more songs, despite already paying £7.99 subscription

With 60 million songs to choose from, Amazon Music will also personalise playlists for you based on your favourite artists and most played tracks. Amazon will also show you trending songs on your homepage, so you can find new tunes straight away. More user-generated and Amazon playlists are available to browse throughout the app. 

Alexa is integrated into the app for a hands-free experience, which is great for driving and exercising. You can also do something called ‘Mirror casting’, so you can connect to a different device and continue playing music, such as on your TV or computer. 


Developed in Sweden back in 2007, SoundCloud has been a huge success, with 175 million monthly users worldwide. It is an audio streaming service that allows people to upload their own music, share, and promote others. 

Subscription package

Price (monthly)


SoundCloud Basic


Upload up to three hours of audio, lossless HD storage, basic listener insights

SoundCloud Pro Unlimited


Unlimited upload time, payment for how many plays you receive, advanced listener insights, SoundCloud suite of audio plugins, lossless HD storage

SoundCloud Repost

£1.87~ ($2.50)

Distribute tracks to other music services, promotional tools, payments

SoundCloud Go


Unlimited tracks to play offline, no ads

SoundCloud Go+


Unlimited tracks to play offline, no ads, access to full catalogue, high quality audio


Great for listening to user-generated music

If you’re a musician, you can promote your own music

Free trial for Go plans

Available for both iOS and Android

Not for users wanting to listen to established artists

SoundCloud is predominantly for people to share their own music, connect with other avid musicians, and to establish themselves as an artist. You can explore who’s trending and the type of music that is currently performing well in the community. 

If you are an artist, you can get real-time feedback on the audio you upload, as well as utilising the promotional tools on some plans to grow your fanbase and potentially get your music seen by press, labels, and managers in the industry. If your music proves to be popular amongst the community, there’s also a chance you could get paid by SoundCloud. It also supports collaboration with other artists in your community.


Founded in 2007, Deezer is the perfect music streaming app for people with children. It only allows you to play suitable music, blocking any tracks that contain explicit lyrics. 

Subscription package

Price (monthly)




56 million tracks, no ads, offline, unlimited skips



Identical benefits, with up to six profiles on one account


Family friendly out of the box

Available for both iOS and Android

Cross-device listening so everyone in the household can play music at the same time

Limited plans


Deezer currently has 14 million monthly users. With 56 million songs, you’re not at all limited for choice. One of its biggest selling points is how family friendly it is. You can explore the top charts in the UK, and discover new albums, all with the reassurance that no expletive or rude language will be broadcast across the house. 

Similar to other platforms, you can play as many songs as you like while out and about, and listen to music ad free. 

For parents concerned about their child’s safety and what they could be exposed to, here are some other blogs you might be interested in:

Which music app is right for you?

Popularity and user numbers are just statistics, at the end of the day - you should pick the right platform based on your needs and your budget. 

For students, Apple and Spotify offer the best subscription packages with the most amount of benefits at half the cost of their premium plans. 

For those on a budget, most of the streaming services have a free option or a one to three month trial. Spotify is the only platform to offer a completely free plan, but beware you’ll have to endure ads interrupting your tracks.

For aspiring musicians, SoundCloud is your best option, as it’s designed to help aid and promote budding artists from around the world. You can publicise your tracks, grow a fanbase, and potentially showcase your talents to people in the industry. 

For families, all of the apps, except for SoundCloud, are viable choices. Depending on how big your family is, you can get a subscription for five or six additional profiles. Consider Deezer if you don’t want any younger members of the household to hear something crude. 

All the apps featured above are available to download on Apple and Android smartphones, and can be accessed on most other devices like tablets, computers, and TVs. The free trials make it easy to browse, try out and find the perfect music streaming app for you. 

So which one is your favourite? Let us know on Twitter

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