By Marc Chacksfield published
Amazon Prime Music
The UK is well versed in music streaming. The recent launch of Apple Music means that Brits now have numerous services to choose from - from the might of Spotify to the quality control of Tidal.
Despite a crowded marketplace, Amazon is hoping that its service, Prime Music, has enough USPs to entice newcomers to its service. But just what is it offering and how is it different from the rest of the pack? In short, Prime Music is Amazon's replacement for its current music service. It adds in 'free' streaming alongside the ability to buy albums and tracks either digitally or on CD. It's Amazon's attempt to meld both free and premium content, much like it has done with its Instant Video service.
While it's not perfect, it does have a number of things going for it. Five to be exact. Read on to find out what they are...
1. Music streaming is now free with Amazon Prime
Spotify and other music streaming services cost around £10 a month, that's £120 a year. Currently the only way you can get Amazon Prime Music is by signing up to Amazon Prime which will cost you a lump sum of £79 for the year. Not only does this undercut many of the services on the market, you also get video streaming, next-day delivery and photo storage with your membership. Yes, this is all to good to be true but there is a catch...
2. Prime Music has just 1 million tracks
It may sound like a lot but Prime Music's 1 million tracks pale in comparison with the 30-odd million that are available on Spotify, Apple Music and others. Amazon has told T3.com that it doesn't see itself as a rival to Spotify et al but an alternative way to stream music. Many more tracks are available but you will have to purchase them if you want to listen to them. Any CDs you purchased in the past through Amazon, though, will automatically become part of your streaming library thanks to Amazon's AutoRip functionality.
3. Prime Music is all about the playlists
As the old adage goes, it's not about what you've got but how you use it. Amazon is putting its million tracks to good use by integrating them into hundreds of playlists. While there's a whole host of full albums available, Amazon is hoping that its playlists will open you up to music you haven't listened to before. Some are pretty eclectic. While we won't be listening to Toddler's Party anytime soon, we will definitely be giving New Age for Yoga a spin.
4. It’s good to be British
Amazon has given Prime Music a big UK makeover. The reason, according to the company, that it has taken a year to come to the UK is that it has been hiring UK-based music journalists and influencers to make sure that the playlists that are being created are for a UK audience. This means that the Walking The Dog playlist that can be found in the US won't be the same as the one in the UK. Apparently, the UK doesn't find country music as palatable as, say, the US.
5. 1 million tracks are ready to stream right now
Although Amazon hasn't revealed the exact quality of streams other than they are 'MP3 quality', the service is available now and you can download music too for offline listening. According to Amazon, the only limit on how much you can download is the space available on your device. There's no need to update any of your apps, either. Prime Music should just appear as an option and can be listened to through iOS, Android and Fire devices, and through Amazon's online site.