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When it comes to music streaming, Amazon Prime Music has always been a long way behind Spotify, Apple Music, and Pandora. But Amazon is never content to see you handing your money to someone else, so the company has released a paid music product called Amazon Music Unlimited Amazon Launches Music Unlimited as a Spotify Killer Amazon Launches Music Unlimited as a Spotify Killer After months of speculation, Amazon has launched its own ad-free, on-demand music streaming service. So, what's the deal with Amazon Music Unlimited? Read More .

How is it different from Prime Music? How much will it cost you? What will your money get you? Let us answer all of these questions and more.

What’s the Difference Between the Two?

The most notable difference — and the one that will get people to pay for Amazon Music Unlimited — is the number of songs available. Prime Music gives you access to around two million songs. This sounds like a lot, but pales into insignificance when compared to Spotify’s 30 million songs. However, Music Unlimited provides “tens of millions” of songs.

Amazon Music Unlimited

Like other streaming services, Music Unlimited provides unlimited skips and the ability to download songs to the app for offline listening. These features are also offered by Prime Music, but the availability of exponentially more songs makes them even more valuable.

What Does Music Unlimited Cost?

Amazon Music Unlimited Pricing

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After a 30-day free trial, the most affordable Music Unlimited plan is $3.99, but don’t get too excited just yet. That plan will only let you use Music Unlimited on your Amazon Echo, Dot, or Tap Amazon Echo vs. Dot vs. Tap: What Are the Key Differences? Amazon Echo vs. Dot vs. Tap: What Are the Key Differences? One common complaint against Amazon Echo was that it had too many features and cost too much. Amazon's response to that? Releasing two variations with smaller price tags: the Tap and the Echo Dot. Read More . If don’t have a smart Amazon device, or if you also want to listen elsewhere, you’re out of luck. You’ll need to pay the standard $7.99 monthly fee, or $79 for a year, on top of your annual Prime fees. Up to six family members can be on the same plan for $14.99 per month, or $149 for a year.

Non-Prime members can also get an individual plan for $10 per month, the same price as Spotify and Apple Music. If you’re a Prime member, and already getting the most out of your other features 6 Amazon Prime Benefits You Might Be Ignoring Right Now 6 Amazon Prime Benefits You Might Be Ignoring Right Now Scratch the surface. Amazon Prime has so many more benefits that people have forgotten about or simply don't realize exist. Read More , the $2 you’ll save each month will add up over time, so it might be worth considering Music Unlimited on that basis alone.

Of course, Prime Music is free for Amazon Prime members. So, if you’re currently making use of that option, upgrading to Music Unlimited is going to cost you. Is it worth spending an extra $100 per year? The answer to this question likely depends on whether you’re satisfied with the collection of music available on the free plan. (I, for one, am not.)

How Can You Listen to Music Unlimited?

Like Prime Music, you can access Music Unlimited through a web player or downloaded app. Amazon has Music Unlimited apps for just about every platform, from your iPhone to your car. At the time of this writing, neither the web player nor the Mac app have the polish of bigger-name streaming apps.

Amazon Music Unlimited App

For example, I searched for Christian metal band Saving Grace in both clients, and no matching artists were displayed. However, the band’s album The Urgency (from 2014) was displayed in the Albums section of the search results (which was on the next screen down). When I clicked on it, I was able to find my way to the artist page, which included four albums and two singles. So why aren’t they displayed in the Artists section?

With that being said, both clients are fine — not great, but fine. It might take some work to find what you’re looking for, and you’ll need to put in a little more effort than you do in Spotify, but they work. Eventually.

What’s the Music Selection Like?

As you might expect, with tens of millions of songs available, the music selection is significantly better on Music Unlimited than it is on Amazon Prime Music Why You Should Give Amazon Prime Music a Second Chance Why You Should Give Amazon Prime Music a Second Chance There are several reasons why you might want to give Amazon Prime Music a second chance. It certainly deserves much more credit than it's currently getting. Read on to find out why. Read More . I always had trouble finding the metal and hardcore bands that I like on Prime Music, but most of them are present on Music Unlimited. So far, I’ve only encountered one that isn’t available. Even my favorite hometown rappers’ albums are available.

With tens of millions of songs, I wasn’t surprised to find pretty much everything I was looking for. The availability of your own favorites may differ, though. That’s one of the reasons you should check out the free trial before you sign up.

Is Music Unlimited Worth Paying For?

The big question in many people’s minds is whether or not Music Unlimited is worth paying for, especially when Prime Music is free for Prime members Which Amazon Prime Subscription Is Right for You? Which Amazon Prime Subscription Is Right for You? Potential subscribers formerly only had one option when it came to Amazon Prime. However, now, Amazon is offering three different subscription plans so you can pick the one that best suits your needs. Read More . Obviously, it very much depends on whether you’re happy with the two million songs currently offered by Prime Music. To be fair to Amazon, that’s a huge number of songs. Whether your musical tastes are well represented, however, will depend a great deal on which genres and artists you like.

If you have wide-ranging tastes, listen to a lot of music, or just aren’t satisfied with the selection offered by Prime Music, the $8 monthly fee to upgrade to Music Unlimited is probably worth it. Unless you already use, and are happy with, Spotify, Apple Music, or Google Play Music Spotify vs. Apple Music vs. Google Play Music: Which Is Best? Spotify vs. Apple Music vs. Google Play Music: Which Is Best? While there are lots of music streaming services around, there are three major ones that stand out above the others: Spotify, Apple Music, and Google Play Music. But which is best? Read More .

Whether you have upgraded or not, though, we want to hear what you think.

Do you consider Amazon Music Unlimited to be a good deal? Will you be paying for the privilege of streaming more tracks? Which plan will you be signing up for? Have you used Prime Music in the past? Please share your thoughts with us in the comments below!

  1. Sandy
    December 5, 2016 at 8:23 pm

    I have a prime membership and I am pleased with. However, the only problem I have is when my son and want to listen at the same time. Only one device per membership is allowed to listen. Will adding this membership solve this problem? Will I be able to stream on Prime membership while my son listens on the paid unlimited. In other words, would it be two separate accounts? Thanks

    • Dann Albright
      December 10, 2016 at 12:15 am

      As far as I'm aware, it won't solve that problem. Hopefully someone who has more first-hand knowledge with that particular issue will chime in!

  2. Santos
    December 3, 2016 at 3:54 pm

    Amazon Music Unlimited is not good deal, i am pay Prime...No good for me, $8......naaaaa, Best Spotify

    • Dann Albright
      December 10, 2016 at 12:16 am

      Why do you find Spotify better? I also prefer Spotify, but it's largely because the kind of music I listen to isn't well represented on Amazon Music.

  3. Don
    December 1, 2016 at 1:05 am

    Here's my question. As a new Echo Dot user, I used Prime Music at first, and found it too limited. I decided to try the $3.99 per month Prime Unlimited which, as I understand it, is limited solely to use on my Dot. That's fine, but I can't seem to find a website or app that let's me see what is available from Unlimited on my Dot. I don't want to play it on another device, but i want to see what is available so I know what to ask Alexa to play. I would greatly appreciate any help.

    • Dann Albright
      December 10, 2016 at 12:16 am

      Not having used a Dot, I don't have the answer for you. Hopefully someone else knows the answer and can leave a comment to help you out!

  4. Sheree Crites
    October 23, 2016 at 8:29 pm

    I have been obsessed with, and using, the Prime music library since it was unveiled. I too, however, found that many artists and songs I was looking for were unavailable.

    I just started the 30 day free trial today of the Music unlimited and am excited to see what I find.

    My Amazon Prime membership pays for itself with all the shipping costs I save. So for me, the Prime music library and Prime shows and movies are just gravy. NOW ADD THE FACT THAT GOLIATH is an Amazon exclusive and was FREAKING PHENOMENAL, I consider the last several years of Prime membership have been reimbursed - but that's another post altogether.

    If Music Unlimited is anything as great as I think, I will be happy to pay $8 a month for the added MILLIONS of songs.

    Now, if we can get Amazon to do a decently priced added membership fee so I NEVER have to pay to rent a show or movie ever again, I think I will be really happy.

    Thanks for the clarification in your article, it really helped!

    • Dann Albright
      October 26, 2016 at 9:38 pm

      Glad you found the article useful! As I said, Music Unlimited does seem to be a really good streaming option. I'm still using Spotify because I'm on a family plan, but I would definitely consider switching if I wasn't.

  5. Raphael Salgado
    October 21, 2016 at 4:45 pm

    It should be noted that the $3.99 plan is for use on one Echo, Tap, or Echo Dot ... at a time. It's not tied to a single device, per se. I have three Echo devices, one of which I actually placed in the car with a micro-USB charger and an aux cable to my stereo, and my iPhone as my hotspot. So, wherever I am at home, or if I'm cruising in the car, I can listen to Amazon Music Unlimited.

    • Dann Albright
      October 26, 2016 at 9:20 pm

      Thanks for pointing that out! The language on the site is a bit unclear, but being able to use it on multiple different devices, just not simultaneously, seems like a nice benefit.

    • JJ
      November 11, 2016 at 6:37 am

      I'm glad that you clarified this! I have been considering the device only option in an effort to save money, and that these devices would most likely be the only place I would be using the streaming service anyway. Thank you for the clarification!

      Also, awesome site to the author!

    • Brandon
      December 1, 2016 at 2:45 pm

      Thank you for posting this. I was under the impression that one device meant that it would only play on my echo, and that if I wanted to listen on my phone in the car that I couldn't unless i got the next tier membership. So from what you said it's one device at a time. That will work fine for me.

  6. atypicalchristian
    October 19, 2016 at 2:58 pm

    +1 for Saving Grace :D

    • Dann Albright
      October 21, 2016 at 9:30 pm

      Awesome! I don't know that I've ever run into another Saving Grace fan. :-)

  7. likefunbutnot
    October 19, 2016 at 2:07 pm

    There is another intermediate option: Prime Music has a $2/month Storage Plan that allows a user to upload up to 250,000 of their own tracks to their Amazon account. Someone with a significant music library might be much more interested in that than in getting access to "Tens of Millions" of tracks they don't remotely care about, as is apparently the case with most of these streaming services.

    I only really got interested in the Storage plan because I own an Echo and want it to be at least marginally useful, but $2/month is basically a rounding error compared to the other streaming plans and services I could choose.

    • Dann Albright
      October 21, 2016 at 9:31 pm

      That's an interesting idea. It doesn't really fit in with the "streaming" focus that a lot of people are going for, but yeah, if you have a big library, that sounds like a pretty great way to go! If I remember correctly, Apple had a similar program.

    • John
      December 5, 2016 at 8:03 pm

      If you are going this route, you might consider that anything you BUY through Amazon is stored for free with no limits. I stopped buying music myself a couple of years ago when I couldn't figure out what was happening to the digital files and I felt like I was being ripped off. The downside to storing my own tracks on any service is the captivity that creates.

  8. Rmarkk
    October 19, 2016 at 1:39 am

    You forgot Google play music should be in the mix also, there 9.99 includes you tube red, and no ad you tube, and have never failed a music search. This will be a hard choice for me at the end of my amazon unlimited 30 day free period. . Still have 3 weeks to decide. I am a prime member of 12 years. I'm also thinking about buying an Echo. Amazon has never failed to take care of me when I've had a problem, I have not been to a a store in a long time except groceries, but thinking about using Amazon fresh, it will not stop me from going to Wegmans, it will be used to fill in from my bi-weekly visit to wegmans.

    • Dann Albright
      October 21, 2016 at 9:28 pm

      Yeah, Google Play Music is another good option. I wasn't aware that included access to YouTube Red, but I also haven't done much looking into it. It's a tough call on which one is best for any given person. If you spend a lot of time on YouTube, though, Google Play Music does sound like a pretty good idea!

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