Spotify Free vs Spotify Premium: Which One is for You?

Spotify is one of the most popular and best music streaming services around but what’s the difference between Spotify Free and Premium? Here we explain how they compare in price, features and audio quality.




As the name suggests, Spotify Free is available to anyone at no cost – we’ll explain why below in the features section. If you want to subscribe to Premium, then it will set you back $9.99 per month. If you’re not sure whether you want to sign up, you can try Spotify Premium on a one-month free trial.

Spotify Free vs Spotify Premium


The reason you can listen to music for free on Spotify is because the service is supported by ads. Every few tracks you play, a short advert or two will be played. It works in the same way as adverts on TV and makes it sustainable for the company. You can use the desktop and web interfaces but the mobile app will only let you listen on shuffle mode or pre-made playlists.

Upgrading to Spotify Premium will remove all adverts so you can listen without interruption – but that’s not all you get for your money. You can listen to anything you want, wherever you want (even abroad) via any Spotify interface (desktop, web or app).

Another bonus is the ability download music for offline listening. A Premium subscription allows you to download/sync up to 3,333 tracks on up to three devices.

There’s also superior audio quality which we’ll explain below.



Spotify uses three different quality settings for streaming, all in the Ogg Vorbis format. 96 kbps is the standard bitrate for mobile, which then jumps to 160 kbps for desktop and web player ‘standard quality’ and ‘high quality’ on mobile.

If you pay the monthly fee for Spotify Premium, you’ll get 320 kbps which is ‘high quality’ on desktop and ‘extreme quality’ on mobile.

Here you can see at a glance the Spotify product comparison table, which compares the features of Spotify Free, Spotify Unlimited, and Spotify Premium.

Spotify Features



If you’re the kind of person who only listens to the occasional song on Spotify, you can probably just maintain a free account. An infrequent user doesn’t need to pay $10 a month to listen for an hour. But if you’re a serious music lover, and you’re looking for the best delivery of sound, you’re going to want to buy the membership. Some of the additional perks to having a Spotify Premium account include the ability to download the songs to your device so that you can enjoy listening to music offline. This saves you a fortune if you’re using your Data Plan to enjoy your music. You’ll also get the highest quality audio for your listening pleasure. You’ll also be able to listen to Spotify universally on any device you’ve got.



If you want to listen to Spotify Free without ads, you can use Streaming Audio Recorder to record Spotify music only. Also, if you want to enjoy Spotify Premium music after you ending the subscription, you can use Streaming Audio Recorder to record and convert Spotify music to MP3 too.

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Source: pcadvisor

Roger W.

I'm a music lover and my friends know that. I'm not a great musician or a singer but I look for all ways to enjoy music. Apple Music and Spotify are my favorite.