YouTube vs. Spotify [Complete comparison]

Apps that stream music for free (or on a “freemium” model) are always the talk of the town. They let the user listen to a global library that is as diverse as you can imagine, but ever since smartphones became a necessity, two of the most usual suspects have reigned supreme. YouTube and Spotify are borderline household names that almost every person with a smartphone is familiar with. YouTube and Spotify are undisputedly at the top of music streaming services. Numerous factors are playing into the success and popularity of both streaming services.

In this post, let’s break down each factor and point of discussion on the YouTube vs. Spotify debate. Before we dive into the topic, let’s review some facts about each service.

What Is YouTube or YouTube Music: How These Two Differ From One Another?

YouTube is a sharing video platform where people can express their creativity by posting a video, and then the community on YouTube comments on it. It was created in 2005, and its headquarters is currently in California, US. Google acquired YouTube after some time, and in 2015 Google launched YouTube Music as an upgraded version of Google Play Music.

This is a more precise platform for music that allows music videos and most videos on videos to be turned into audio pieces, and people get to personalize their account playlists.

Since we are talking about the music streaming platforms, the main discussion is about YouTube Music and Spotify. There are two modes to use YouTube Music: one is free, and the other is Premium, meaning users need to pay to access some of the features.

Like other music services, you can use YouTube Music to create playlists, stream music, and check out the latest songs from any smart device, such as a laptop or mobile. More than 80 million videos can be turned into soundtracks and added to the library, says YouTube.

There are about 50 million total users of YouTube Premium and YouTube Music. While basic features such as listening to music or creating playlists are a part of free YouTube Music, there are many features such as downloading music, listening to songs in the background, or when the screen is off are all possible with the premium version. The best part about the premium version of YouTube Music is that with extra 2 US dollars, one can enjoy ad-free music.

Similarly, the original YouTube also focused on music and streaming music videos at the start. Most music artists have gained popularity based on YouTube views and likes. However, one of the most significant disadvantages of using original YouTube is that many songs cannot be downloaded due to copyright issues.

Due to this reason, YouTube Music is the better platform for people who want unlimited access to stream and download music and make customized playlists for different events.

There are many other competitors of YouTube Music, such as Amazon Music or Apple Music, but Spotify is the biggest competition in this field.

Read Top YouTubers in the United States

What Is Spotify?

With more than 188 million downloads, an app launched in 2008 has acquired the highest level of users. The streaming service can be accessed with laptops and mobiles. There is a free version of the app, and then there are paid-for versions as well that are divided into many categories. Just like YouTube Music, there is a student version; then there are different family packages.

In terms of prices, YouTube and Spotify are similar to one another. However, Spotify is only an audio-providing music service, while YouTube can also give access to videos.

Pros and Cons of YouTube Music

Pros of YouTube Music

Below are some of the advantages of using YouTube Music.

The Prices For Packages Seem To Do Justice To the Customer Satisfaction

There are three packages available on YouTube Music Premium, which are individual plans for around $12, then student plans are also there for $7, and family packages for $18. These are relatively optimum costs for the features that YouTube Music provides. It allows the users to download music on the go, enjoy ad-free music and even play the songs while using other apps.

Convert Videos Into Songs

Another pro of YouTube Music is that users can convert any cover, live show, or other videos into an audio version. If you want to listen to audiobooks or a TEDtalk, just use YouTube Music. The regular videos will convert into audio songs that users can download or create a playlist of their favorite ones.

Find Hidden Gems

One of the most significant advantages of having YouTube Music is finding several hidden talents that are not available on other platforms. Many small artists start their careers through YouTube, and once they are famous enough, they start uploading content on different media. Since YouTube is the initial stage for every artist, users get a chance to hear most of the new content and fresh talent on YouTube through YouTube Music.

YouTube Browsing And Listening History Is Easy To Access

There are many songs that users listen to while they drive; however, it is difficult to add all the new favorites to a playlist while driving or doing any chore. YouTube Music has an accessible listening history that allows people to download or add the music they would have heard a while ago without hassle.

Easier Search Tools

Are you looking for a specific song by a musician? However, you cannot find it because you don’t remember the exact title of the song. YouTube Music allows you to access an artist’s complete list of songs if you just type in that artist’s name.

Not only this, but the search filters of YouTube Music are also fantastic. You can filter the search around songs or artists, the upload date, playlists, and even the total playback time. YouTube Music shows the top and trending options for a particular search.

Youtube Music Actually Shuffles The Playlists

Unlike other streaming apps that keep shuffling the songs in the same three to four orders, YouTube Music always manages to shuffle the songs in a new order. This is the best pro of getting YouTube Music if you are into creating playlists and are sick of listening to the same repeated order of songs.

Has Similar Features As Google Play Music

Although Google Play Music wasn’t much of a hit like YouTube Music, some features of Google Play Music were also added to YouTube Music. One of them is the option to upload audio device files to the cloud storage to keep them safe, even if the device is stolen or broken.

Play Music On Different Devices At The Same Time

Just like Netflix, YouTube Music also offers the function of playing different music on different devices with the same account. YouTube Music allows up to three different songs to play parallel to one another. So, you can use a single account and share it with your best friend or partner.

Cons Of YouTube Music

Even though YouTube Music has many good aspects, we cannot ignore the disadvantages the streaming service presents. Here are some of the cons of using YouTube Music.

No Built-in Podcasts Feature In YouTube Music

If you love listening to podcasts, you need to get Google Podcasts and YouTube Music. The app doesn’t have an integrated podcasts function, which is a downside of this service.

YouTube Music Is Not A Place For AudioBook Lovers

YouTube Music may have the biggest library of authentic music, covers, and live performances; however, it lacks in featuring audiobooks, especially ones with high quality and amazing narrators.

YouTube Music Is Not Available In Many Countries

YouTube may be a norm in the US or other mainstream countries, but there are still many countries where YouTube Music is still unavailable while Spotify is. This creates a larger fanbase for Spotify.

Low-Quality of Music For Free Users

The song quality for users is about 128 kbps for free users of the app, which is relatively low. Also, the app is not compatible with every type of speaker.

YouTube vs. Spotify
YouTube vs. Spotify

Pros And Cons Of Spotify

After analyzing the advantages and disadvantages of YouTube Music, it is only fair to consider the pros and cons of Spotify as a streaming service, too, so that it could be clear which streaming app is better.

Pros of Spotify

The Swift Search Feature By Spotify

The first important feature of Spotify is the swift search options that the search engine displays as you type in the keyword. Unlike Spotify, YouTube Music asks the user to select the option displayed in the suggestions or hit the search button when they have written the song they would like to search. This extra step may not be much, but it impacts impatient users who crave spontaneity.

You Can Control Spotify From Any Device

Since Spotify plays only one song at a time for an account on all devices it is logged into, the user can control the account and the song from anywhere. You can play music on a laptop using the speaker there and control the songs from the phone. It is convenient to use in the car and at gatherings when the remote is in your hands.

Spotify Can Connect To Any Speakers

One of the best features is that Spotify can connect with all types of Wi-Fi speakers and devices and provides the same quality of music.

Higher Quality Music Than YouTube Music

Although there are no bigger differences in the pricing of plans in each app, you may find that Spotify gives better quality music to free users at 160 kbps. Also, there is a feature to skip any song six times in an hour if you are a free user.

Great Audiobook Library

Unlike YouTube Music, Spotify has a huge range of excellent audiobooks organized neatly. So, if you are into listening to your favorite books by amazing vocal artists, this is the app to go to.

Integrated Podcasts On Spotify

For podcast lovers, Spotify has its podcast feature and even shows that users can enjoy.

Spotify Blends

Blends are one of the favorite features of many users. It is a way in which the Spotify matches listening histories of two or more users and creates a playlist. So, if you want to create a customized playlist with your friends and no one wants to do the manual hassle of adding each mutual favorite song, let Spotify blend do it for you.

Radio Feature

The love for radio may never die for millennials, and Spotify has a radio feature that cashes onto this love. You can play similar songs in the radio feature related to the song that is playing and listen to some new songs while vibing with the old nostalgic songs from the past years.

Read YouTube vs. Netflix

Cons Of Spotify

While many features of Spotify are unique, we cannot disregard some of its cons.

There Is Limited Access To Free-Account

Not all features are available in a free account. The songs only play in shuffle mode, and users are allowed to skip the songs only six times in an hour. Plus, after the free trial, there are only previews of some songs available to the users.

No Listening History On Phone

Users cannot access their listening history on their phone, so if there is a song they liked and forget to add to their playlist, they would need to open their laptop or PC to access the history.

Doesn’t Create Great Shuffles

Spotify keeps on recreating the same playlists with two or three shuffles that can bore a person.

YouTube vs. Spotify: Which Is The Best?

After reading the pros and cons of YouTube Music and Spotify, getting a music streaming service may become easier for people. In reality, both streaming services have limitations and some of the best features that are not common in other music streaming services.

The choice depends on the users and the priorities they have in mind regarding the music app, such as if someone likes reading audiobooks, then they should go for Spotify, while if anyone is into shuffling music, then YouTube Music is the better option for them.

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