If you are a music enthusiast, there are many ways to listen to your digital music collection. However, two of the most popular options currently available are iTunes and Spotify. These are two very different music players, so it may be difficult at first to know which the best option for you is. Here is a quick comparison of both to give you a better idea about which one is right for you.
The iTunes Model
ITunes has been around since 2001, and involves a basic model where you purchase the albums and individual tracks that you want to listen to in MP3 format. These then appear in your iTunes library, but you are also free to use them on other MP3 players or to copy them to a CD. You can transfer them to your iPod and play them through your new iPod dock or in your car. You have purchased the songs, and they are yours to do with as you want.
The Spotify Model
Spotify works very differently. With Spotify, you are essentially renting the music rather than purchasing it. Spotify charges you a subscription fee, and you are free to listen to as much music as you want to by streaming it over the internet. There are no limits with the main subscription, but you never actually purchase the music so you cannot burn them to a CD.
Spotify offers flexibility in the sense that you can create playlists that you can listen to on your computer or on your smartphone. You can take your music with you, and there is also the option to listen offline.
However, iTunes has a greater degree of flexibility because you can use your music in more ways. You are never restricted by platform and you can do with your music what you want. iTunes also now has iCloud access, meaning you can listen to your music from the cloud even if you don’t have all of your music stored on your device.
Why Choose Spotify or iTunes?
Spotify tends to be an excellent option for people who listen to a lot of music, and especially people who like to listen to discover new music. The subscription fee is low, and the more you listen to it, the value you get from it.
However, if you do not listen to a large amount of music, you may prefer to just buy tracks when you want to and listen to them as you please, in which case iTunes may be a better option. If you listen to a lot of music, iTunes may well cost you more, but at the same time you get to grow your collection and keep your music for life.
One thing to remember is that Spotify also comes with a free version. This provides six months of unlimited streaming, and then you are given a monthly time limit. However, you can also import your existing music collection into Spotify and use it as your main music player while listening to the occasional free music on the free subscription. If you decide that you want to listen to more, you can invest in the full subscription.
What Works for You?
There are some big differences between iTunes and Spotify, but there is no reason why you cannot have both. Perhaps you want to use the free Spotify subscription to check out new music, whilst using iTunes to purchase the tracks that you like. The above guide should help, but the best thing to do is try them both out and you will probably find that you prefer one over the other.