Amazon Music Unlimited vs. Prime Music

Amazon astonished the world with its Music Unlimited and Prime Music subscription models. Amazon Prime Music is free with a Prime membership subscription, whereas Amazon Music Unlimited is the premium alternative. The Financial Times reported Amazon has 32 million subscribers across both its music streaming services. Combined, they boast a 70% yearly growth rate. These numbers place the media giant behind Spotify and Apple Music.

Amazon Prime Music vs. Unlimited

Both plans include a 30-day free trial, ad-free listening and unlimited downloads. 

Amazon Prime Music Amazon Music Unlimited
Monthly price$12.99/mo. without Prime
Included with Prime
$9.99/mo. without Prime
$7.99/mo. with Prime
Additional plan pricingN/ASingle device: $3.99/mo.
Student: $4.99/mo. or $0.99/mo. with Prime
Family: $14.99/mo.
Free trial lengthN/A30 days
Number of songs2 million+50 million
Offline listeningYesYes
Special featuresAd-free listening, Amazon device compatibilityExpanded Amazon Alexa commands, Amazon device compatibility, high-resolution audio

Amazon Music Unlimited vs. Prime Music cost

How much does Amazon Music cost? Amazon Music Unlimited comes in at $9.99/mo., matching competitors like Spotify and Apple Music. However, you benefit as a Prime member with a reduced rate of $7.99/mo. or $79/year. 

Students enjoy a discount of $4.99/mo. — and the savings are even bigger with a Prime membership, costing only $6/mo. 

Amazon Prime Music is free for all Amazon Prime subscribers.

If you only listen to music on one of Amazon’s devices (Echo products, Fire TV or Tap), you can take advantage of Amazon’s single device plan for $3.99/mo. Just keep in mind you’re limited to one way of listening. 

Is Amazon Music the right streaming service for you?

Does Amazon Prime include music? Your Amazon Prime membership comes with access to 2 million songs, as well as other perks like Prime Video and free shipping. However, the music selection may not be enough if you’re into obscure tracks.

What is Amazon Music Unlimited? Amazon Music Unlimited grants you upgraded access to over 50 million songs, but you have to pay extra, even if you’re a Prime member. 

Amazon Music Unlimited sounds better, too. Tracks stream clearly at 256 kbps—ideal with an average set of speakers. Look into Amazon’s Music HD plan if you’d like an even higher quality sound. 

User experience 

You can sign into Amazon Music Unlimited through a downloaded mobile app or a web player. Amazon’s interface is clean and to the point. Built into the design are numerous features to assist you in discovering and purchasing music. Amazon recommends albums and playlists in a helpful, unobtrusive manner. Both the app and web player have numerous playlists, recommendations and a music store.

Within both the mobile app and the web player, the navigation menu on the left tracks all imported and purchased music, keeping your content organized and accessible.  

Amazon devices like Alexa and Echo give you access to even more useful functions such as AI capabilities that assist you in recalling songs, or scheduling tracks to play at a certain time of day. 

Amazon Prime Music and Amazon Music Unlimited are compatible with lots of different Alexa-enabled and third-party devices, including your smartphone, smart TV and wireless sound system. 

Amazon personalization

You can alter your music preferences in both Amazon Music Unlimited and Prime Music apps. If you have Alexa, you can change your settings within the Alexa app. Amazon also contains an Explicit Filter allowing you to block all devices on your account from playing music with explicit lyrics. Simply navigate to your Settings and select Music to customize your features.

Head to Google Play or the Apple App Store for Amazon’s mobile app, as well as other add-ons and widgets to streamline Amazon across your devices. 

Amazon extras

Amazon Music Unlimited touts an impressive karaoke-like feature that scrolls lyrics in real-time. Its Side by Side feature provides artists’ commentary on their most influential work. 

With Amazon Music Unlimited, you also enjoy the exclusive feature of additional Echo commands. Echo’s personalized understanding of your unique music style and commands are not available with Amazon Prime Music.

Disadvantages

Amazon’s dull and uninspired interface for both services leaves something to be desired. If you’re seeking less mainstream music, you’ll also be deterred by Amazon Prime Music’s smaller song selection. Amazon’s song sharing options are lacking compared to competitors, only letting you swap song links via text and social media. 

How to upgrade to Unlimited 

If you have an Alexa, you can simply say: “Alexa, upgrade my Amazon Prime Music subscription.” Here’s what the process looks like for everyone else: 

  1. Visit amazon.com.
  2. Navigate to the top left corner and click the three-bar icon.
  3. A tab will appear. Click Amazon Music.
  4. Hit the Try Now button.
  5. The prompt will ask you to create an account.

The takeaway

Amazon Music Unlimited is a fantastic deal for Amazon Prime members. For the Prime member who’s a casual music listener, Amazon Prime Music may be enough. However, for music fans who require an extensive library without limitations, you’ll be much happier with Amazon Music Unlimited.   

Zack Kulm

Contributing Writer

Zack Kulm is a writer and contributor of soda.com. He covers a variety of topics from entertainment and gaming technologies to pop culture commentary. Kulm received a degree in English from Penn State University and Film Studies from Pittsburgh Filmmakers Institute. He also produces award-winning documentaries.