You might be wondering if music on Alexa is free without Amazon Prime.
What kind of music do you get if you don’t want to subscribe to Amazon Prime? It turns out, that you can get a lot of music for free without Prime, but you do have to put up with ads to get it. Like most free music services out there, you’re going to support the service by listening to advertisements.
Not only do you have to deal with ads, but there are some other limitations as well.
If you have your own personal music collection, you can stream those through Alexa, also with some limitations. See our article on your options for streaming music from your personally owned music collection.
Here are some options for free music streaming:
What do You get with Amazon Music Free?
You have access to top playlists, thousands of stations, and podcasts. What you don’t get is HD, Ultra HD, or Spatial Audio. You can, however, listen to music on all your devices (Android, iOS, Echo, and Fire TV/Stick) but only one device at a time. Another limitation is that you don’t get unlimited plays or personalized stations.
Amazon Music is the default service for Alexa. To use it, you don’t have to do anything but tell Alexa what to play on one of your devices.
What about Free Music with Spotify?
With the free version of Spotify, you have access to their collection of over 40 million songs. Just like every other free streaming music service, you have to listen to occasional advertisements. However, unlike Amazon Music Free, you have much more freedom in selecting personalized music.
You can easily add Spotify as your default Alexa music service for either music, stations, or podcasts. Go to your Alexa app and select “More”. Then tap on “Settings”. Scroll down to the “Alexa Preferences” section and choose “Music & Podcasts”. There you will be able to “Link New Service” and choose “Spotify”. Link your account to Spotify to start using it with Alexa.
Next, go back to your Music & Podcasts preferences and tap Default Services. From this menu, you will now be able to choose Spotify instead of Amazon Music.
This allows you to tell Alexa to play music without specifying the service. Otherwise, instead of saying “Alexa, play music”, you’d have to say “Alexa, play music on Spotify.”
What free music do you get with Pandora?
Over millions of songs come with Pandora’s free ad supported streaming service. Keep in mind that the audio quality isn’t as good as some of the other services out there. Also, there are less choices in creating playlists and interacting with personal music preferences.
Change the Pandora streaming service as the default service for Alexa – if you prefer to use Pandora. The instructions are the same for changing the default service as discussed in the previous section with Spotify.
Amazon and Alexa
If you already have Echo devices and are a regular user of Alexa, it probably makes sense to go with the good integration between Alexa and Amazon.
So, what are your options when it comes to Alexa, if you wanted to go add free?
Is Amazon Music free with Prime?
Yes, with Amazon Prime, you get ad free access to over 2 million songs and thousands of playlists. If you’re already paying for Amazon Prime for the free shipping, expediated delivery, extensive product list and free movies, then you don’t have to pay anything extra to enjoy Amazon Music Prime. If you aren’t currently using Amazon Prime, It starts at $14.99/month or $139/year. Students get a discount at $7.49/month or $69/year.
Seniors and others on select government assistance plans can get a discount as well. It’s $6.99 for those who qualify.
When you upgrade to Amazon Music Prime, you get ad free unlimited play on all your Amazon supported devices. You also get offline playback and personalized stations. However, you are still limited to one device at a time and the music will stop playing on Echo devices if there is inactivity for more than an hour.
How much is Amazon Music Unlimited on Alexa?
Amazon Music Unlimited is Amazon’s premiere music streaming service. It comes with over 90 million songs and provides some songs in HD, Ultra HD, and Spatial Audio on select devices and plans.
You don’t have to have Amazon Prime to use it; it comes with its own subscription fee. You can get it in three versions, the family plan, the individual plan, and the single device plan.
How much is the Amazon Music Unlimited Family Plan?
The family plan allows you to listen to music on up to six devices at once and offers the full range of songs, playlists, and podcasts. This includes ad free, offline music and personal playlists. The family plan is $14.99/month or $149/year.
How much is the Amazon Music Unlimited Individual Plan?
The individual plan gives you all the same features as the family plan, but you are limited to one device at a time. If you already have an Amazon Prime account, the individual plan is $8.99/month or $89/year. If you don’t have prime, it’s $9.99/month. There is also a student discount for the individual plan, which is $4.99/month.
How much is the Amazon Music Unlimited Single Device Plan?
The single device plan is for those on a budget who are more casual listeners. There are a few more limitations, however. You still get the 90 million songs, but it is in SD quality only. You also have to have an Echo or Fire device.
When you sign up, you have to select which single device you want to listen to music on. Offline listening is not available for the single device plan. But, it’s also only $4.99/month.
All of the free streaming music services offer a wide variety of songs and styles, but all with occasional advertisements. Additionally, each of the services covered has several different tiers of accounts.
The services we covered are identically priced for each tier – which has obviously become an industry standard. They provide a free ad-supported version, a student plan ($4.99/month), an individual plan ($9.99/month), and a family plan ($14.99/month). One difference is that Amazon Music has a single device plan, that is priced at the same rate as the student plan.
The differentiators are the number of songs, the audio quality, and the UI/UX (User Interface/User Experience) of their respective apps. Amazon has the best quality and largest selection of music, and it probably makes the most sense for those already in the Alexa ecosystem (let’s call it the echosphere, shall we?).