spotify free vs premium plan

In the era of digital music streaming, Spotify stands out as one of the top choices for music enthusiasts. Yet, deciding between Spotify Free and Spotify Premium can be a perplexing task. In this exhaustive comparison, we will dissect every facet, from costs to sound quality, to empower you to make an informed decision. Let’s embark on our journey through the world of Spotify!

Spotify Free vs. Premium

Deciding between Spotify Free and Premium has become more complex due to recent upgrades by competing music streaming services. Apple Music, a close rival, already offers lossless and spatial audio. Outpacing Spotify in high-quality music streaming.

If you’re considering a Spotify Premium subscription at $10.99 per month or sticking with Spotify Free and exploring other streaming options. Our Spotify Free vs. Premium comparison will help you make an informed choice.

Spotify Free Vs. Premium: 7 Important Insights

Ad-Free Listening: Bid farewell to intrusive ads with Spotify Premium. Free users, but, will experience occasional interruptions.

Offline Listening: Premium allows you to download songs for offline enjoyment. By making it perfect for situations without an internet connection.

Sound Quality: Premium subscribers revel in higher sound quality. By streaming songs at a crystal-clear 320kbps, Free users receive 160kbps.

Playback Control: Premium offers unlimited skips and the freedom to play any song on demand, whereas Free users face certain limitations.

Music Library: Both Free and Premium access the same extensive library of tracks, but Premium grants additional control and features.

Discovery Features: Premium introduces personalized playlists like Discover Weekly, enhancing music discovery. Free users have limited access to these features.

Costs: While Free is self-explanatory, Premium comes with a monthly fee, which we’ll explore in detail shortly.

Spotify Free vs Premium: Pricing

Let’s break down the costs associated with both Spotify Free and Premium.

Spotify Premium Plan
Source: Spotify

The cost of Premium is reasonably affordable, and you can even save by opting for Family or Student plans. Additionally, Spotify frequently offers promotions and bundles.

Music Library

Both Spotify Free and Spotify Premium provide access to the extensive library of “over 80 million” songs and podcasts. However, Premium subscribers have the advantage of accessing new releases exclusively for two weeks, making it ideal for those who want the latest tracks immediately.

As of July 24, 2023, Spotify Premium costs $10.99 per month, with a student discount of $5.99 per month. Group deals are also available, such as Spotify Premium Duo for $14.99 per month and a family plan for six accounts at $16.99 per month.

While Spotify Free offers almost the entire library, serious music enthusiasts may miss out on some fresh releases if artists choose to make them exclusive to Premium subscribers temporarily. Additionally, with the potential inclusion of lossless playback in the standard Premium tier, Spotify Premium could offer even more content compared to the free version, aligning with services like Apple Music and Amazon Music HD.

Spotify Free vs Spotify Premium: Ads

The most significant distinction between Spotify’s Free and Premium tiers is the absence of ads in the latter. This applies to both visual ads within the app and the radio-style ads that interrupt songs on Spotify Free.

Your tolerance for advertising might be a personal matter, and it may not bother you if you’re the sole listener. However, if you intend to use a Spotify Free account for playing music at a party, you might need to explain to your guests why they’re hearing car insurance ads between songs.

Supported Devices

Spotify is accessible on a wide range of devices, including your PC, smartphone, tablet, smart TV, and popular gaming consoles like the PS5 and Xbox Series X.

Additionally, Spotify content can be played in cars with Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, or Spotify’s Car Thing device. Importantly, this device’s accessibility remains the same for both Premium and Free users.

Sound Quality

If you’re an audiophile with top-quality headphones or a keen ear, you might lean towards Spotify Premium for its higher-quality audio option. Premium streams music at a 320 kbps bit rate, a significant improvement compared to the 160 kbps on Spotify Free’s mobile app. For desktop app users, this drops to 128kbps.

The ability to discern audio quality differences depends on factors like your headphones and connectivity. While debates about distinguishing Hi-Res Audio from lower-resolution audio may arise with the launch of Spotify HiFi, the current contrast between 320kbps Spotify Premium and 160 or 128 kbps Spotify Free streams should be quite noticeable.


The choice between Spotify Free and Premium ultimately depends on your music preferences, budget, and priorities. If you’re looking for a cost-effective way to enjoy a vast music library and don’t mind occasional ads, Spotify Free is a solid choice. However, for those seeking an unparalleled music experience with ad-free listening, offline downloads, and enhanced audio quality, Spotify Premium is the clear winner.

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