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Tidal and Spotify Side by Side Comparison

Tidal and Spotify, as the subscription-based music streaming services, have their own strong points and receive much popularity from users. Different people have different impressions towards Tidal and Spotify and have their reasons to choose Tidal or Spotify as the fixed subscription service. This article will make simple comparisons between Tidal and Spotify in each side, and share the useful tips to use these 2 streaming services.

tidal and spotify

Tidal and Spotify Comparison Table

Firstly, let's look at the quick guide for the basic differences and similarities between Tidal and Spotify.

  Tidal Logo Spotify Logo
Founded October 2014, UK, US, and Canada October 2008, Stolkholm
Monthly fee Tidal Premium $9.99 / Tidal HiFi $19.99 Spotify Premium $9.99
Family plan Premium $14.99 / HiFi $29.99 for 5 family members $14.99 for 6 family members
Student plan Premium $4.99 / HiFi $9.99 per month $4.99 per month
Military plan Premium $5.99 / HiFi $11.99 per month /
Free trial period 30 days 30 days
Availblility 52 countries 58 + many territories
Number of users over 5 million subscribers over 155 million subscribers
Music library over 70 million over 70 million
Sound quality (Premium) 320 kbit/s in AAC for Tidal Premium / variable in FLAC, ALAC, MQA for Tidal HiFI 320 Kbps in Ogg for Premium / 192 Kbps in Ogg for Free
Offline listening Yes, with paid subscription Yes, with paid subscription

Side by Side Comparisons between Tidal and Spotify

1. Tidal vs Spotify: Cost

Spotify has a two-tier system: free and $9.99 per month, and it also provides nearly 50% discount for family members and students. Tidal also has two basic plans: the cheapest $9.99 per month for Tidal Premium essentially matches Spotify’s Premium offering. The more expensive $19.99 per month for Tidal HiFi is twice as Spotify's Premium. Tidal also offers nearly 50% discount for family members, students and militaries, but you still need to pay more if you want Tidal HiFi plans.

Verdict: Tidal has no advantage in pricing, which means that you need to pay much more for CD quality. The higher price may step some users back, but fortunately, $9.99 is the market price same as other streaming music services.

tidal and spotify price comparison

2. Tidal vs Spotify: Audio Quality

Tidal Premium plan offers "high quality" at AAC 320 kbps. Spotify offers the 96kbps option as normal quality on mobile, but also offers a high-quality 160kbps with the free version. And after you pay $9.99 a month for Spotify you can stream at 320kbps "Extreme quality" for better sounding experience.

If you pay for the high-end Tidal HiFi at $19.99 per month, you can access to lossless content which is not compressed and streams at CD quality. It streams music in the form of 16bit, 44.1kHz FLAC files with a bitrate of 1411kbps, so the serving for brilliant audio quality differs Tidal from other rivals.

Verdict: Tidal is winner over sound quality aspect and is the ultimate music resource for fans of hi-fidelity music. Especially when playing Tidal music via external speakers, the delicate difference of the audio quality can be distinguished. And if you are particular about audio quality, Tidal is the best choice.

improve spotify audio quality
How to Improve the Streaming and Download Audio Quality on Spotify?

If you want all your music from Spotify sound amazing, you can take multiple methods to improve sound quality. And here we list the best ways you can refer to change or improve the streaming or download audio quality on Spotify.

Learn More >

3. Tidal vs Spotify: Discovering New Music

The feature of discovering new music is also an important factor you should take into consideration when choosing a music subscription service. It includes music library, recommendation, radio, podcast, etc.

Discover new music

Music Library: Spotify offers over 70 million songs and TIDAL 48.5 million, but this only matters if your favorite artists or bands are missing.

Recommendation: "Discover Weekly" playlist on Spotify is really worth mentioning here. This is an awesome way to discover new music. But it seems that there is nothing similar in Tidal. Spotify remember the information each time you listen to a track, try a new artist, skip a song, repeat a song, or do anything else while using the service, in this way it quantifies the new music and a playlist with 30 new tracks that you might love will be refreshed every Monday morning. In addition, Release Radar, which works differently from Discover Weeklya and updates in each Friday, is a great place to discover new music. And another music discovery feature - Daily Mix is a good way to find more music.

But Tidal also has its own way to work out. It provides curated playlists, tracks, recommended hi-fi albums as well as top 20 charts and staff picks based on editorial slant. You can't search music by genre, but there is a Genres button you can press on in the sidebar which will take you to curated areas with playlists and recommended albums. In general, Tidal acts this feature simply and directly. And this all depends on what music you’re looking for and which way you really like.

Exclusive: Both Spotify and Tidal has its own exclusives, but Tidal may works most prominently. It has deals for exclusive content from major artists including Jay-Z, Beyonce, Kanye West, Nicki Minaj etc.

Music Videos: More than 75,000 music videos and music movies built-in Tidal is another factor that no rival can compare. Spotify now also offers some music videos in app and users can watch HD music videos on YouTube.

spotify add-ons
Best Add-ons or Third-Party Apps for Discovering New Music on Spotify

In addition to the built-in features that Spotify holds, there are plenty of third-party add-ons, or web-based tools which are using Spotify official API or not. Here we list the best 8 add-ons or web-based tools for Spotify, which are working with Spotify and bring your streaming music to a new level.

Learn More >

4. Tidal vs Spotify: Social Features

Good social features make music service special. You can connect Tidal to Facebook which will allows you to share music with your friends or extract a URL if you want to link someone to any album, playlist or track. But the social features are not as mature as the ones in Spotify. It'll take a lot of work to catch up with it, but it should be expected.

5. Conclusion: Tidal or Spotify, Which One Should You Choose?

Tidal sounds marginally better if you have the equipment to show its true colors. They offer two totally different things: Spotify focuses on playlist for enjoying music on the go and share your favorite music to others, but Tidal is for audiophile who are high demanding for audio quality. On the other hand, If you have the budget, you can get Tidal.

Extra Tips: How to Move Spotify Playlists to Tidal?

If you want to move Spotify music to Tidal, especially the exclusives that you can't find on Tidal, you can use Sidify Music Converter to download music or playlist from Spotify to MP3 / AAC / FLAC / WAV / AIFF for transferring to Tidal for playback.

>> Learn more about How to Move Spotify Playlists to Tidal <<

Sidify Music Converter

Sidify Music Converter

  • okDownload Spotify song or playlist to MP3/AAC/WAV/FLAC/AIFF.
  • ok Keep 100% original audio quality of Spotify after conversion.
  • ok Keep ID3 tags and metadata to well organize music library.
  • okBurn Spotify music to CD.