Best Sites to Listen to Music
Pandora is an online music listening site that is powered by the Music Genome Project. The feature that makes Pandora fun is that it creates custom stations based on the listener’s musical preference. The listener can provide positive or negative feedback for the selections that Pandora produces, and this further customizes the listening experience. This works by analyzing over 400 difference metrics for each song and then matching these preference to similar song styles.
A major advantage of Pandora is that you are very likely to discover new music that is similar to music you already enjoy. Pandora is also a great way to listen to free music, as you can stream music for free as long as you don’t mind ads. You can also pay for a subscription that will let you listen to music for free. Pandora allows you to create multiple stations for different genres, and also share them with friends.
Some negative aspects about Pandora would be that the ads can get intrusive if you don’t want to pay for the premium subscription service. It also takes some time and attention to build the stations the way you like, so you may end up with songs that don’t quite fit the genre you want if you don’t take the time to curate your stations. Also, free users only get a limited number of song skips, so this could further interfere with your enjoyment of your chosen stations.
- Great way to hear new music
- Free listening option
- Vast library of music
- Ads can be annoying
- Stations require time to properly curate and calibrate
- Discover new music with genre/mood/activity playlists
- Paid accounts can stream a lot of music
- Integrates well with Android accounts
- Limited number of skips for free users
- Free users can only listen to pre-made lists and uploaded songs
- Does not integrate well with non-android devices
Google Play Music
Google Play Music is a music listening site that provides both a free and paid user experience. You can choose from curated genres, mood, and era lists which make for a fun listener experience. For example, you could choose between a 90’s hip-hop playlist, a “laid back Sunday” playlist, or an acoustic covers playlist all with ease from the menu.
Some pros for Google Play Music include the ability to discover new music through picking a genre playlist that you are interested in. If you have a paid account, you can also stream a large amount of music anytime you want. You can then create your own custom playlists, or upload preexisting music to play from the app. Google Play Music is also an easy choice for Android users as it integrates well with Google’s existing products.
Some cons for Google Play Music are that free users get a limited number of skips, so if you run out, you could be stuck with music you don’t like for a while if listening to a pre-made playlist. Free users can also only listen to music that was purchased aside from the premade playlists. Also, if you use a system other than Android, there may be other music listening sites that integrate better.
Spotify is similar to Google Play Music, but has the advantage of letting free users stream any music, and not just music they already own, as long as they don’t mind listening to advertisements. Spotify also integrates with social media easily, if that is something a listener is looking for.
Some pros for Spotify are that you can access premade playlists and they are well curated. Spotify also offers a weekly customized playlist for each listener that suggests new music based on what you’ve listened to recently. This is a great way to discover things you may not know about.
A negative aspect of Spotify is that you there is a limit to the amount of content you can download to listen to offline. You are able to download 3,333 songs and keep them offline for 30 days. This may feel too limiting for some listeners.
- Well curated pre-made lists
- Create your own playlists
- Great new artist discovery
- Limited amount you can download offline
- Some ads for free listeners
- More Traditional radio feel
- Listeners are offered suggestions from 1500 stations
- User doesn’t have much control over music
- Limited to only 15 skips a month
iHeart Radio is essentially a lot of radio stations that the listener can combine together for a customized listening experience. It is a free service and can also be used across a number of different platforms, from smartphones and tablets to cars to gaming systems. This makes it easy to listen to free music wherever you are.
Something that makes iHeart Radio unique is that it gives the listener the experience of listening to more traditional radio stations. Some people prefer this type of listening, rather than having to listen to a whole album or create a playlist. Listeners are asked to identify which genres they prefer and custom stations are suggested that pull from over 1,500 local iHeart Radio stations.
A negative to iHeart Radio is obviously that the user doesn’t have as much control over what content they are listening to. There is also no function for rewind or fast forward, so users are stuck listening to the whole song, or skipping it entirely. Skips are also limited to 15 per month.
Jango is another example of the free music listening sites which function similar to traditional radio. Users can create and share custom stations, and Jango also has social media integration that may be appealing to users.
Some positives of Jango are that it is free, and also gives a more traditional feel of listening to a radio station. Jango also offers unlimited skips so gives a more customized feel to the experience. Jango helps to promote independent artists by offering suggestions to listeners based on more mainstream artists that they like.
A downside to Jango is that you do not have the ability to rewind, fast forward, or play on demand. Also, you can only remove individual songs from a station, instead of an artist. Jango may be a more limited way to listen to music online, but since it is free, some users may be drawn to it.
- Unlimited Skips
- Promotes independent artists
- No play on demand
- Can only remove songs, not artists, from stations