Apple Music vs Amazon Prime Music comparison
Apple Music has been flying since it launched back in June, and Apple claims that it has 11 million subscribers already. Amazon Prime Music hasn't had quite the same impact, and had a relatively low-key launch, but for anyone thinking about getting an Amazon Prime account for those who are already signed up to the service it's an added feature that could convince you to cough up your cash.
You'll also like: Apple Music Festival 2015 - how to get tickets.
Apple Music vs Amazon Prime Music comparison: Price
Apple Music is available for free for the first three months, after which it will cost you £9.99 per month to subscribe. That's a pretty standard price for music streaming services in the UK, and if you use it often enough can be a really good way to save money on buying albums and singles from iTunes, and also save space on your iPhone as the songs are stored in the cloud unless you download them to listen to offline.
Amazon Prime Music is only really worth subscribing to if you're interested in Amazon's Netflix rival Prime Instant Video, as well as its next day delivery service and its kindle bookstore bonuses, as you'll get all of those things rolled into one for £79 per year. When you break it down, that's only £6.50 per month, which is a really great deal.
It's worth signing up to the free trial of Amazon Prime if you haven't done so already, as it means you'll be able to try all of the aforementioned features for one month to see whether you think it's worth the £79.
See also: Apple Music FAQ
Apple Music vs Amazon Prime Music comparison: Catalogue
Of course, one of the most important selling points for a music streaming service is the selection of songs. There's no doubt that Apple Music wins here, and by a long shot too. Apple Music offers 30 million songs including Taylor Swift's newest singles, which are not available to stream on any other service.
Amazon Prime Music currently has a much smaller selection of music, at only one million songs. That sounds like a lot, but we found that there are lots of well-known artists missing. If you're mostly into the popular music you should find that there'll be plenty of tracks to keep you going, but anything a bit unusual is unlikely to be available.
Apple Music vs Amazon Prime Music comparison: Compatibility
Both of these music streaming services work on Apple devices, both mobile and desktop. They have their own dedicated apps for iPhone and iPad, while Apple Music can be found in iTunes when using a Mac but you'll have to use the web player for Amazon.
Amazon Prime Music also works on Android, but Apple has yet to release a Music app for its rival smartphones. Surprisingly, though, it does plan to release an Apple Music app for Android later this year.
Apple Music vs Amazon Prime Music comparison: Music discovery
When it comes to discovering new music, both Apple Music and Amazon Prime Music do offer recommendations, though we much prefer Apple's method.
Apple Music has a section called 'For You', which offers up playlists, individual tracks and artists, and timely content for you to enjoy. It does take a bit of time for Apple Music to get to know you, but you can tell it what you like and dislike so it will eventually start recommending songs that will almost always be of interest to you.
Amazon Prime Music uses your previous purchases and anything you've marked as 'I own it' to determine what recommendations it shows you. It also looks at what you add to your library, but during our time using the service so far it has recommended largely the same tracks and we can't find a way to tell it what we really like and dislike.
Amazon does offer a decent playlist section, though, with moods and genres to choose from including 'Best of Prime Music,' '50 great 80s classics,' 'Morning cup of coffee' and more.
Similarly, Apple has a playlists section that also includes moods and genres, and each playlist has been curated by experts in that field or genre, according to the company.
Apple Music vs Amazon Prime Music comparison: Design
Apple Music is by far nicer to look at, although we do think it has a bit too much going on in some sections, making it look cluttered. However, it's a huge improvement over the Amazon Music app, which we think is a bit dark and gloomy.
If you're struggling to get used to Apple Music, try our How to use Apple Music complete guide.
Apple Music vs Amazon Prime Music comparison: Extra features
There is no radio feature available for Amazon Prime Music, so we'd consider that a big downfall in comparison to Apple Music's brilliant radio feature. Apple offers Beats 1 Radio, which is a live, unskippable radio station that plays globally 24 hours per day, and there's also lots of additional channels to choose from that play an infinite amount of songs with as many skips as you like based on a particular genre or mood.
Both Amazon and Apple have additional motives with their streaming service, as they both aim to encourage you to purchase digital music via their respective shops. However, they also both offer offline listening, which means you'll be able to download songs to listen to when you're not connected to the internet, and those songs will be available offline for as long as you're a subscriber to the streaming service.
Apple Music offers a social element that Amazon Prime Music lacks, which is called Connect. It's not as social as Spotify's offerings that connect you to Facebook within the app to tell you what your friends are listening to, but it does give you inside access to posts made by the artists themselves, and you'll be able to like and comment on those posts.
Amazon Prime Music can't beat Apple Music when it comes to the user interface, catalogue, recommendation engine or radio features, but it manages to be just about good enough to add an extra appeal to the £79 per year Amazon Prime, which is rapidly becoming very good value. You might find that Amazon's service is enough but Apple Music is better for serious music lovers who want to listen to whatever they fancy, whenever they fancy, and discover new tracks along the way.