Amazon Music Unlimited versus Prime Music: What’s the Difference?

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If you’re an Amazon Prime subscriber you can already stream music, so why would you want to pay US$7.99 for the just launched Amazon Music Unlimited? It’s the extras you get with Amazon Music Unlimited that set the two apart—but they may not be worth the price.

Amazon Prime music versus Amazon Music Unlimited

Comparing Amazon Prime streaming music to Amazon Music Unlimited

The similarities beween Amazon Prime streaming music and Amazon Music Unlimited make it hard to tell the two apart, so we’ll start off with what they have in common:

  • Ad-free music playback
  • Curated playlists
  • Personalized stations
  • Unlimited skips
  • Offline listening
  • Streaming on Echo, Echo Dot, Amazon Tap
  • Streaming app for iOS and Android

The biggest difference between Prime Music and Amazon Music Unlimited is the number of available songs: Prime streaming offers about 2 million tracks, where Amazon Music Unlimited offers “tens of millions” of songs.

Amazon Music Unlimited includes Side-by-Sides, which is a “behind the scenes” feature where artists offer commentary on their songs and albums. It also offers additional Echo commands so listeners can say things like, “Alexa, play Bruno Mars” to create a playlist of popular Bruno Mars songs, or “Alexa, play happy music” to build a playlist of uplifting songs based on your listening history. Prime Music doesn’t offer those features, although Echo users can ask Alexa to play songs and different music types in a more limited way.

If a larger music library, behind the scenes commentary, and extra Echo voice commands sound like your thing, then maybe Amazon Music Unlimited is for you. That’s assuming the monthly cost is worth it.

Prime Music is included with your $99 a year Prime subscription. Amazon Music Unlimited costs an extra $7.99 a month for Prime members, or $3.99 a month if you have an Echo, the soon to ship Echo Dot, or Amazon Tap. You can also sign up for Amazon Music Unlimited for $9.99 a month if you aren’t a Prime subscriber.

If you’re still on the fence, Amazon Music Unlimited includes a 30-day free trial so you can try before you subscribe. If you don’t already have an Apple Music or Spotify subscription, maybe Amazon Music Unlimited is worth it—especially if you already have an Echo.

4 Comments Add a comment

  1. I’ve seen more than one article indicate that the new service is only $3.99 if you already have an Echo. That’s not entirely true. It’s $3.99 if you already have an Echo and want to only play music on that single device. It’s still $7.99 (for Prine users) for unlimited devices whether you have an Echo or not.

  2. They need to make it more clear what music unlimited is, when I first got the popup message on my amazon music player, and an email advertising the new service, I thought they were removing offline listening with a prime account and making you pay more for offline listening, much like spotify’s business model. I was actually ready to cancel my prime subscription until I realized songs still worked offline on my phone and decided to actually research what unlimited was, and found this article. Granted they probably don’t want to undermine the already available service prime music offers, by competing with themselves and saying “oh prime music sucks, buy this music unlimited for a much better service!!” but I think making the distinctions clear would minimize confusion and perhaps get more to pay for unlimited, and even save some misinformed cancellations due to thinking prime music offline listening is no longer included.

  3. I am a little ticked off that now it seems they may be phasing out prime music. There is nothing that says “Prime Music” in my Kindle anymore…or in my phone app…only playlists and stations. Next thing you know there will be no more free perks with prime. I’m so sick of greedy companies and the constant grab for monthly subscriptions..

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