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The Cheapest Music Streaming Service In The UK

Are you thinking of taking out a music subscription plan or just looking for a better deal? Take a look at some of the cheapest music streaming services available in the UK.

cheapest music streaming service

I can’t remember the last time I bought a CD, and in fact, I’m not convinced my 8-year-old has ever seen one. From around 2010, I moved completely over to downloading all my music. But what surprised me was that the cost to download an album was often the same as buying a CD.

Over the last few years, we have seen a lot of companies entering the streaming services market. For a monthly cost (often for less than a CD), you can have access to millions of songs. But with so many music subscription services available, which is the cheapest?

The cost of streaming services in the UK – Overview

Individual
(Per Month)
Family Free trial?
Apple Music£9.99 £14.993 months
Amazon Music Unlimited£9.99
(£7.99 for
Prime members)
£14.993 months
Spotify£9.99£14.991 month
Deezer£9.99£14.991 month
Tidal£9.99£14.991 month
SoundCloud£9.991 month
YouTube Music£9.99£14.991 month

Apple Music

Apple Music was introduced back in 2015 and now offers over 70 million songs. You can stream your favourite music or download it to listen to when you’re offline. You can also share your music across all your devices.

You’ll have access to 3 live radio stations which are hosted by artists playing today’s hits, classics, and country music. If your car is compatible, you can stream through CarPlay and even download music to your Apple Watch.

There are 3 membership options available:

  • £3.99 per month for students
  • £9.99 per month for an individual membership
  • £14.99 per month for a family membership which can be used by up to 6 people.

If you’re unsure whether Apple Music is for you, new customers are often given a 3 month trial for free.

Visit Apple Music

Amazon Music Unlimited

Amazon music was 1st launched back in 2007 and claims to have over 55 million listners.

The membership can cause a little confusion though. If you’re an Amazon Prime member, you’ll probably know that over 2 million songs are included as part of your subscription. That might sound like a lot until you find out that Amazon Music Unlimited gives access to over 60 million tracks.

You’ll also be able to listen to thousands of playlists and stations programmed by Amazon’s music experts. Plus, you can download music to listen to offline.

There are 2 membership options available for Prime members:

  • £7.99 per month for an individual membership or £79 for the year.
  • £14.99 per month for a family membership or £149 for the year.

For non-Prime members:

  • £9.99 per month for an individual membership.
  • £14.99 per month for a family membership.

Students are eligible for Amazon Music Unlimited for £4.99 per month.

Visit Amazon Music Unlimited

Spotify

streaming with spotify

Launched from Sweden back in 2008, Spotify now has over 320 million active users.

Spotify appeals because you can use some of its content for free, all you need to do is create an account and you’ll have access to over 40 million songs. But there are some disadvantages to the free account which may encourage you to upgrade to the paid (known as Premium) version.

When listening to free Spotify, you can only skip 6 tracks every hour, with no limits for paying members. If you’re listening to music on your mobile, you can only listen to albums or playlists, rather than being able to choose individual songs.

The paid membership is the only real option if you want the freedom to listen to particular songs, with the ability to download and not be interrupted by ads.

Premium membership costs:

  • £4.99 for a student membership.
  • £9.99 for an individual membership.
  • £12.99 for a duo account – 2 people under 1 roof.
  • £14.99 for a family – 6 accounts in total.

Visit Spotify

Deezer

Deezer was launched in France back in 2007 and is thought to have around 14 million active users. It operates in a similar way to Spotify, with a free version and a paid membership.

The free plan gives you access to over 56 million tracks, but you will have to listen to adverts too. Again, you will have to rely on shuffle play, rather than being able to choose specific songs.

Premium gets rid of the ads and will allow you to download music. Costs are:

  • £4.99 for a student membership.
  • £9.99 for an individual membership.
  • £14.99 for a family membership that gives you 6 accounts.

Visit Deezer

Tidal

Tidal was launched in Norway in 2014 and offers podcast and video streaming, as well as a catalogue of over 70 million songs. Tidal claims to have 3 million subscribers.

You can download your favourite songs and Tidal has been praised for its sound quality.

There are 2 options to choose from when it comes to membership:

  • £9.99 per month for a standard Premium membership.
  • £19.99 per month for Tidal HiFi, giving you better quality sound.

Visit Tidal

SoundCloud

soundcloud - music subscription

Soundcloud was created and launched in Germany in 2008. It claims to be the world’s largest music and audio platform and announced in 2019 that it had upload its 200 millionth track.

You can listen to trending music for free, but if you want access to the full music catalogue and want to download tracks, you will need to take out a subscription.

  • £5.99 per month for Soundcloud Go, which gives access to a limited catalogue.
  • £9.99 per month for Soundcloud Go+, for full catalogue access and high-quality access.
  • £4.99 per month for Soundcloud Go+ for students.

Visit SoundCloud

YouTube Music

The YouTube Music app was revealed back in 2015, but it came to prominence in 2020 when it became Google’s main music service, taking over from Google Play Music. In total, there are over 60 million songs available to listen to.

Similar to Spotify, there is a free version which also means listening to ads. Or you can upgrade to YouTube Music Premium if you want to do away with adverts and have the ability to download music to listen to offline.

Subscription prices are:

  • £4.99 per month for student subscription.
  • £9.99 per month for an individual membership.
  • £14.99 per month for a family membership (5 accounts).

Visit YouTube Music

Which is the cheapest music streaming service?

As you can see from above, all the music streaming services have almost exactly the same price point.

If you’re really looking for the cheapest way to stream music, then opt for something like Spotify or Deezer. Yes, you are a little limited with functionality, but it won’t cost you a penny.

If you want the ‘full experience’ then best value goes to Amazon Music Unlimited, but only if you’re a Prime member. And of course, Amazon offers you the choice to pay for a full year up front, saving you even more. But if you don’t want Amazon, then you can really take your pick of any service.

If you’re a student, then Apple Music shades it with a membership cost of £3.99 per month.

As they all offer free trials, it may be worth trying a few to see which you prefer to use. As they all offer 50+ million songs, it’s unlikely that your provider of choice won’t have your favourite tracks.

Please note that this post contains affiliate links.

FAQs

What is the difference between Prime Music and Amazon Music Unlimited?

Prime Music gives you access to 2 million songs whilst unlimited has a catalogue of over 60 million.

Do you have to be a Prime member to purchase Amazon Music Unlimited?

No you don’t. However, the subscription is more expensive for non-Prime members.

Does Tidal provide a discount for students in the UK?

In 2017, there were reports of a 50% discount being offered to students. However, this does not appear on their website, although it is available to students in the USA.

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