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SoundCloud VS Spotify Which One Is Better

Published on 22.02.2023 by Maiko Maisadze

Music is food for the soul. Music of different genres and playlists for various purposes like working out, studying, and going to parties are readily available. With availability comes the need to distribute music to the listening ears of millions of people all over the world. That is the main purpose of music platforms. 

Various music platforms serve the same purpose but in different ways. When choosing a music platform, users look for certain qualities. For example, if you want to choose a music platform as a new artist, your selection will be based on how easy it is for people to discover your music. If you have ever wondered if a music platform is best for you, you are in the right place. We will compare two of the leading music platforms based on reviews from their users and facts about their qualities. 

Which of Soundcloud and Spotify would you prefer? On what basis are you making your selection? In the subsequent paragraphs, we will make the process of selection easy for you. We will compare both platforms according to ease of use, sound quality, subscription, and many more factors. After the comparison, we will then conclude. 

Ease of Use

This refers to how easy it is to navigate music platforms. Having a platform that is simple to navigate is important because it helps users quickly find the music they are looking for. It also makes it easier to discover new music, which is key to keeping users engaged with the platform.

Soundcloud: Starting from the signup page, Soundcloud is pretty easy to use. Users who are not familiar with the platform may find it difficult to navigate the dashboard on the desktop and website. 

Spotify: Over the years, the dashboard and features of Spotify have been updated to fit any device. No matter the device, Spotify is straightforward to use. Without unnecessary taps, you will be able to access your library and stream songs and playlists in a few minutes. 

Subscriptions on Spotify and SoundCloud

Here, we will explore payment options for both platforms. This is a huge deciding factor in whether you use music platforms to stream music or to make money as an artist. We will address what each plan offers and its prices. 

Spotify

Free plan: Contrary to popular opinion, you can access all music on Spotify's free plan. from their library of over 100 million tracks and 5 million podcast titles. Unfortunately, there are also many features that you cannot access while using a free plan. 

You cannot download songs on a free plan, nor can you get the highest audio quality. Another issue you may encounter with a free plan on Spotify is unnecessary advertisements. 

Paid plans: Spotify's paid plan varies according to size; the price ranges from $5  to $15. You can link up to six accounts on their premium plan. They even have a special premium offer for students on Spotify. Depending on your budget, they may be expensive, but they provide good value for money.

In addition to streaming all music and giving you access to download songs for later, Spotify paid plans can get you enhanced playlists, the highest sound quality, and group sessions. Freeze out Spotify's premium plans to get the exact price and offers on each service. 

SoundCloud

Free plan: There are two categories of subscription plans on SoundCloud: those for artists and those for listeners. For artists, there is only one free plan, and that is the Next Plan. With the next plan, you can upload three hours of the track, share music with collaborators, and get basic fan insights. However, you cannot share your music on other platforms, get paid for music, or get a profile badge.

Listeners can listen to music without paying on SoundCloud. The main issues are the advertisements and the limited music libraries. 

Paid plans: Again, there are two categories: listeners and artists. Artist plans range from $2.50 to $12.00 per month. You can share music on other platforms and get paid through streaming services and collaborators with a premium subscription to Sound Cloud. You will also get access to mastering credits, partner offers, and tools to track your music.  

For listeners, the basic paid plan offers an ad-free listening experience and offline listening. Other, costlier plans offer you access to full SoundCloud storage, high-quality audio, and DJ integration tools. 

Music Platforms with the Highest Sound Quality

Some platforms often offer features such as high-resolution audio and surround sound capabilities, which can further enhance the listening experience. These features allow listeners to experience music on a deeper level, as they can pick up on nuances in the audio that would otherwise not be heard. Additionally, high sound quality can create a more immersive experience for listeners as they can hear sound from multiple directions.

Spotify and Soundcloud have similar sound quality. Sound quality mostly depends on an internet connection because all music has to reach a certain quality before it can be uploaded. You can also turn up the audio quality for a better listening experience or turn it down to save data. 

Advertisements on Music Platforms

Music streaming platforms are becoming increasingly popular, and advertisers are looking to take advantage of this trend by placing ads between songs. Ads can be annoying for some listeners because they disrupt the listening experience and can be intrusive. Additionally, many streaming platforms don't offer any kind of compensation for those who are subjected to ads.

You can get up to three ads while streaming on both Spotify and SoundCloud. Free accounts on Spotify are bombarded with ads. With a premium account, you can get an ad-free listening experience. 

Instead of playing advertisements between songs, SoundCloud plays them before the songs. The ads are few compared to Spotify. This may be because their free plan allows you to enjoy only a limited number of songs. Their paid service, on the other hand, gives you an ad-free listening experience.

The Best Music Platforms for Artists 

Thousands of music artists rise every day, and the ones with the most exposure get the stage. Before you read our thoughts about which music platform is suitable for artists, you first need to categorize yourself. Are you a new artist or a seasoned one? Full-blown artists can use any music platform because people already know them and their music. On the other hand, upcoming artists still have to put their music out there for their intended fans and followers. Hence, you need to choose the best platform for you. 

Here are some qualities to consider before choosing a music platform as a new artist:

  • Popularity: popular music platforms offer you a large audience, but with popularity comes competition. Lots of artists have to compete for the limelight, and it will be challenging for new artists to get their music out. Spotify is more popular than SoundCloud, but now you know that popularity can be a disadvantage. 
  • Genres of music: You should check if a music platform plays your genre of music before you get on it. This is critical because it will give you an indication of the types of people that use it and how much exposure you can get. It will also let you know if you can expect to find other musicians in your genre to collaborate with. Both Spotify and SoundCloud play varying genres of music, but Spotify has more genres.
  • Quality of listeners: This refers to the ability of people to understand the underlying meaning of music. Quality listeners will provide thoughtful feedback, which the new artists can use to adjust and provide better music. You truly cannot know this until you use either Spotify or SoundCloud. Since Spotify has more users, they likely have more quality listeners too.
  • Price and opportunities: Aside from the exposure that your music can get on music platforms, you should also consider payment in two ways: the amount you will pay and the amount you will get paid (in the form of royalties). When it comes to royalties, Spotify offers better rates, but SoundCloud has cheaper payment plans for artists. 

Special Qualities of Soundcloud and Spotify

Availability on all platforms: Music platforms need to be available on most devices because this ensures that users have access to the music they want to listen to regardless of what type of device they are using. This means that users can access their music libraries from any device, making it more convenient to listen to music while on the go. SoundCloud is only available on the Web, Android, Chromecast, and a few other platforms. Spotify, on the other hand, is available on almost all devices, including speakers, gaming consoles, car audio systems, and many more. Furthermore, while using Soundcloud, you can only have one account on one device, whereas Spotify premium plans allow you to link up to six accounts.

Availability in all regions: When music platforms are available in most regions of the world, it helps to promote the local music industry and gives artists more exposure. It also increases the diversity of music available to listeners, allowing them to discover original and exciting music from around the world. Spotify is a perfect fit because they are everywhere, unlike Sound Cloud, which is not. 

Conclusion

We have dissected the features and qualities of Spotify and SoundCloud, and by now, you already have a choice. Depending on your status as a listener, a new artist, or an experienced artist, your choice will be different. Because Spotify has a diverse library and high quality, it is a viable option if you just listen to music and podcasts. However, if you are on a tight budget, consider SoundCloud instead. 

As a new artist, your choice should be a platform that will increase your exposure, and that is SoundCloud. Although Spotify has more users and more opportunities, your music would have to compete with millions of other songs. Spotify may be a suitable place for you if your music has a following and popularity on social media platforms.