A Project for Better Journalism chapter
Arts & Entertainment, Features

Different Ways to Stream Music

Listening to music is a very common activity at Harrisonville High School among the majority of students. With the internet providing unlimited options for listening to music, how are you supposed to know which provider to choose?

From an anonymous Twitter pole with the limited options of Spotify, Pandora, iHeartRadio, and Apple Music, 58 percent of the 38 votes went to Spotify, 28 percent to Apple Music, 11 percent to Pandora, and 3 percent to iHeartRadio.

It’s clear that Spotify is one of the more popular options. According to Time Magazine, since Spotify’s release in 2008 it’s reached 58 different countries and has 60 million active users, 20% of which pay. If you’re not interested in paying money to listen to music, the free version offers a shuffle option, you have to listen to ads periodically, and you have to be online.

If you are interested in the full version, Spotify Premium, it’s $9.99 a month. The fee allows you to get unlimited listening, no ads, and an HD audio option. You’re also allowed to still listen while offline.

An avid music-listener, senior Kaden Wilson likes Spotify best because of how much he can do with it.

“It’s kind of just a social network at the same time because you can see what your friends are streaming, too.”

Apple Music received 28 percent of votes. Launching June of 2015, Apple Music is a music streaming option that runs through iTunes. According to imore.com, “Apple has put together a service that combines your purchased music library and ripped tracks with the power of its Apple Music streaming catalog.” Apple Music can be beneficial to iPhone users because you don’t have to download new software and you pay for it through your iTunes account.

Although there isn’t a free version of Apple Music, they do offer a 3-month free trial before having to pay the monthly rates of $9.99 for an individual membership, $14.99 for a family membership, and $4.99 for a student membership.

Grabbing only 11 percent of the votes was Pandora Radio. Pandora started in 2000 and has 77.9 million active listeners as of October 2016 according to expandedramblings.com. On Pandora, you can create a station based on a song, artist, or genre, and be introduced to other similar songs based on your likes and dislikes.

Sophomore Connor Blentlinger enjoys Pandora the most because of its internal diversification.

“Whenever you get the channel that you want it plays a big variety of that genre. When you click on the artist there’s a variety there, too.”

With the free version of Pandora, you’ll experience ads and limited skipping options. For $4.99 a month, you’ll be rid of the commercials and will be given a set of stations available for offline listening.

Whether you’re interested in listening to specific music you want to pick out, or if you’d rather be exposed to new genres, artists, or songs, there’s a streaming network for you. Fortunately, most networks offer a free version, or a free trial for a certain amount of time, so you can test which network works best for you.