When comparing Youtube vs Spotify, the Slant community recommends Spotify for most people. In the question“What are the best music streaming services?” Spotify is ranked 3rd while Youtube is ranked 12th. The most important reason people chose Spotify is:
Spotify has over 20 million songs and arguably the largest collection out of its competitors and usually has the fastest access to new music. The Spotify desktop client allows local music files to be imported with the option of syncing with a mobile device which largely mitigates the issue of missing artists.
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Pro Large catalog of music
Huge variety of music to pick from including rare recordings, covers, mixes, etc.
Pro Community created mixes and remixes
Because anybody can upload to YouTube, it has content from remixes of popular songs to hour long mixes and everything in-between. Much of this content can't be found on other music streaming services.
Pro Really good suggestions
YouTube has some of the best suggestions around. Almost all of the suggestions are similar to the song you're currently playing, and allow for an endless music streaming service.
Pro Multiple frontends available
There are Chrome extensions (UpNext, Streamus), webapps (The Parade) and even native desktop apps (Atraci) that are all powered by Youtube. They provide additional functionality and convenience on top of what Youtube already offers.
Pro Huge collection of music and fast access to newly released songs
Spotify has over 20 million songs and arguably the largest collection out of its competitors and usually has the fastest access to new music.
The Spotify desktop client allows local music files to be imported with the option of syncing with a mobile device which largely mitigates the issue of missing artists.
Pro Related artists
Helps to find new authors based on your previous picks
Pro Curated playlists
Public playlists on Spotify created by other people are great for finding new music.
Pro Client's functionality can be extended via third-party apps
Spotify desktop client allows for third-party apps. They extend the functionality of Spotify and many of them offer new ways of discovering music. Noteworthy apps include Moodagent, Last.fm, Swarm.fm, ShareMyPlaylists, The Hype Machine, We Are Hunted, Shuffler.fm.
Pro Has a free version
A free, ad-supported account allows streaming from an extensive library of music.
Pro Weekly Discover playlist uses a great algorithm
A playlist generated by Spotify based on your listening habits and released every Monday. The algorithm used by this playlist is great and stands out from its competitors.
Con Confusing service for music
There is a Youtube Music app, which allows one to stream music videos as well as just the studio audio versions of songs. This feature is not accessible on the Youtube website, or the regular Youtube app.
In order to get ad free service on the site as well as the music app, ones needs to subscribe to Youtube Red for $9.99 a month. This nets the user features, such as Youtube (Google) created movies and videos as well as a way to save musical playlists for offline use, but only in the Youtube Music app. This makes for a confusing and fragmented service that requires using multiple apps, a website, and a subscription to a paid service that encompasses much more than just music, in order to get the full use out of music on Youtube.
Con Lots of ads unless you buy a subscription
There are lots of ads on YouTube, even in the middle of long songs. Some of them can be skipped, however others cannot. Most of the time ads are only displayed between songs.
Con Rips artists off
YouTube pays artists $0.0007 / play, which is less than 6 times what Spotify pays ($0.0044), and Spotify itself is criticized for ripping artists off.
Con Ambient music monetization denied
YouTube doesn't allow the monetization of the ambient musical tracks.
Con Free account have lots of ads
If you hate commercials, you would buy Premium or go on using something else.
Con Discovery is terrible
The discovery algorithm is poor and does not learn fast enough. Not obvious how to train it.
Con Poor audio quality
There's a high range of bitrates and most of vary from average to bad.