Spotify, Rdio and Deezer are three of the best music streaming services out there, and you don’t have to part with your hard-earned cash to enjoy them. They all offer paid subscriptions, but they also give you the option of signing-up and listening to songs for free. Sure, you might have to sit through an advert every now and then, but that’s not too much trouble is it?
To help you decide which free music streaming services is best for you, we’ve come up with a few top tips for each one.
(Android,iOS, Windows Phone, Blackberry)
Overview: Spotify is the daddy of music streaming services, with over 30 million songs available and 20,000 new ones being added each day. There are 75 million active Spotify users worldwide, with 55 million using the service free of charge.
What you get for free: If you’re on your mobile you can listen to any song in shuffle mode. You can skip five tracks an hour, but you’ll need to listen to some fairly regular adverts. Sound quality is limited to ‘standard’ rather than the HD quality you get on the paid version.
- How soon is now. Spotify’s new Now page reckons it can serve you up the right music for you, day and night. It learns what you like, and gives you recommendations (from your playlist and Spotify’s in-house experts) that will adapt over time to fit your ever-changing moods.
- Run, run, run. This is another new Spotify feature aimed at the runners out there. It detects your pace and rhythm, and gives you songs of a similar tempo - so you’ll always be moving in perfect harmony with your sounds.
- Show me. Spotify has added video and audio shows to its range. They’ve teamed up with some big names like ABC and Comedy Central, so there’s lot of great content available - check out the ‘Shows’ section to see what’s on offer.
(Android, iOS, Windows Phone, Blackberry)
Overview: Rdio has around 35 million songs on its playlist, and it offers full Facebook and Twitter integration if you’re keen on sharing your superior music choices with friends
What you get for free: Rdio offers a completely free ad-supported listening service. This takes the form of radio stations based on artists, genres and moods, including ‘You FM’ – your own completely personalised station. If you want to listen to songs or albums on demand, you’ve got to pay for the privilege.
- My favourite things. Rdio uses the music you’ve listed as ‘Favourites’ to choose what it recommends for you, so it’s worth keeping this section populated. When you browse by artist, you’ll be given the option of tapping on a heart to add them to your Favourites.You can add songs, albums, playlists and stations to your Favourites too - a long tap will bring up this option for you.
- Remote control. Rdio has an easy-to-use remote control feature that works automatically. If you open Rdio on your mobile while it’s running on your laptop, you’ll be able to use pause and skip to control the playlist remotely. And if you tap ‘Play Here Instead’, Rdio will start playing on your mobile, without missing a beat.
- Turn off your mind, relax and float downstream. If you like listening to a few gentle sounds to help you drift off to sleep, then use Rdio’s handy sleep timer. Turn it on and select any time between 15 and 120 minutes. Sweet dreams are made of this, some might say.
(Android, iOS, Windows Phone, Blackberry)
Overview: Deezer has 16 million monthly active users, with 11 million of them happily enjoying it for free. In addition to its 35 million music tracks, it also offers over 20,000 news and entertainment shows.
What you get for free: It’s the same old story, really. If you listen to Deezer for free you’ll also be treated to regular adverts. And sound quality is ‘standard’, rather than the higher quality you get with a paid subscription.
- Everything flows. Deezer’s ‘Flow’ claims to be your very own personalised radio channel. If you can’t decide what to listen to, activate flow and it’ll start playing music that it reckons you’ll be into, based on what you’ve been listening to in the past. If you like what you’re hearing, tap the heart icon to make it a favourite track, and to give Deezer an even better idea of what floats your boat. If there’s a track you’re less enamoured with, tap the heart with a line through it to let Deezer you never want to hear it, or its kind, ever again.
- Words. This awesome option displays the lyrics to your favourite tune while it’s playing on your mobile device. So you can now go one better than Kanye at Glastonbury and get the words to Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody spot on. Simply tap the microphone in the middle of the display – just above Freddie’s head if you’re listening to Queen’s greatest hits.
- Serial thrilla. Deezer recently made some major additions to its spoken word content, and it’s now got an amazing 20,000 great podcasts and radio shows available. If you’ve been wondering if the true crime podcast ‘Serial’ is really all it’s cracked up to be, you can now find out for yourself.
Do you use Spotify, Rdio or Deezer’s free music streaming service? Or would you recommend another? How many hidden song titles did you find in this article? Feel free to comment below.