For the first time streaming music has surpassed downloads as the most popular way people listen to music.
Services like Spotify and Apple Music have millions of premium members and each offers millions of songs to choose from. On Wednesday Amazon launched its own premium streaming service to compete with Spotify and Apple Music.
Amazon Music Unlimited is similar to its competition and the company says it currently offers over 10-thousand songs from popular artists including Taylor Swift who pulled her music from Spotify last year.
Amazon Music Unlimited costs a little less than Spotify and Apple Music which costs $10 per month. Amazon's service is $8 for members of Amazon Prime, non-members will pay $10.
I listen to a lot, and I mean a lot of music some of which I stream from Spotify. I used Apple Music for awhile but moved over to Spotify because I preferred the layout both on the computer and on the mobile app.
I'm a Prime member so I am very interested in the songs Amazon offers and the lower price is even more attractive. Comparing Amazon Music Unlimited with the competition I found they were all similar, even identical in some respects. Each service offers popular songs from today as well as older songs (from the 70s and 80s) that I enjoy.
I searched for about a dozen artists on Amazon and found search results for each one. The Beatles, Supertramp, Boston, AC/DC/Imagine Dragons, One Republic, Merle Haggard and Martina McBride.
Amazon Music Unlimited is especially attractive for Prime members who own an Amazon Echo device. These smart home devices are about as close to having a full-time assistant than anything I could afford.
These work, except for the Tap, just by saying the name "Alexa". Using the device with Amazon Music Unlimited is the most convenient way I've seen to play music. I tried "Alexa, play Kansas" and within a couple of seconds I was listening to "Dust in the Wind".
You don't even have to know the title of the song or who sings it. As long as you know a few words of the song Alexa can find it. I tried "Alexa, play that song that goes 'Lately I've been, I've been losing sleep" and the voice said "Playing Counting Stars by One Republic" and the song played.
While Amazon Music Unlimited is $8 a month for Prime members, it's even less if you own one of the Echo devices. $5 a month will play just about any song you've ever heard on one Echo device.
If you want to play it on more than one Echo, you'll need to pay for the full membership. Amazon is offering a 30 day free trial of its new music service and if you're a Prime members who loves listening to music at home or at work, it's worth a try.