soundcloud lede
Company SoundCloud

Soundcloud introduced a reworked and less expensive SoundCloud Go on Monday. The plan comes in addition to the free music SoundCloud offers and SoundCloud Pro for artists.

For $4.99/month SoundCloud Go users get access to more than 120 million songs uninterrupted by ads and it offers offline listening. New users can try a 30-day trial for free. SoundCloud also offers a SoundCloud Go+ plan, which increases the number of available songs to more than 150 million songs total. This plan costs $9.99/month.

SoundCloud's new offering is close in comparison with its competitors but when it comes to choosing a music streaming service there are a number of factors to consider.

So what are the differences between SoundCloud’s new offering and its competitors Pandora and Spotify?

Pandora Pricing

Beyond Pandora Radio’s free listening that includes ads and stations that play a combination of songs with a limited number of skips, the streaming service also offers an ad free option called Pandora Plus. Plus costs $4.99/month or $54.89/year. With Plus you get more skips to better personalize your stations and no ads.

Spotify Plans

Spotify offers more personalization than Pandora does and it offers more plans but it comes at a higher price. There is a free Spotify plan that is similar to Pandora on mobile in that it plays a selection of songs from selected artists. The web version offers more personalization but there are ads. Spotify Premium allows users to download playlists and their favorite songs to take on the go and play offline. It also includes other perks like no ads and better sound quality. Premium costs $9.99/month, although students pay $4.99/month. There is also a Premium Family Plan for up to six users at just $14.99/month, a bargain if you have a large family.

Which is the best music streaming service?

While each service does essentially the same thing, offers you ad-free music to stream or download, the variations are important to consider. If you plan to mostly use one of these services in a web browser on a computer, Spotify may be best because it gives you the option to choose specific songs and playlists. Spotify and SoundCloud offer you the freedom to choose certain songs rather than an entire artist or station like Pandora. And of course price plays a role in which service is best for you. Ideally you and your family would all split the cost of a Spotify Premium Family plan, keeping the cost to a minimum and getting you all the perk of listening to your favorite songs ad-free.