I love having a specific device for local music storage and playback, until about two years ago I was an iPod user still, and when the device finally bit the dust, I switched over to a new Sony Walkman. But, with that being said, I have smart assistants in the home, and in my car – Amazon Alexa specifically, however there’s also a Google Home Mini. To listen to music on those devices, as well as when you’re on the go, and just when you want to pull up a specific song, music streaming services are a great thing to have.
For a little over a year I was an Apple Music Subscriber – this was not my first go around with Apple Music either, however I dropped it for a little while as I just didn’t use it previously. Prior to that, I was a Spotify Free (and short term Premium) user beginning very close to its initial public release in July of 2011, and a very heavy user of it until about 2015 – this was much easier than trying to juggle devices at 2am in the library. The curated playlists, as well as the genre mixes were a great mixture of fantastic new to me songs, and songs that I loved already. This was the reason I had been a user for so long, even with ads. Why did I stop in 2015? Well, as I stated before, Apple Music. At the time, I was a true, hardcore Apple Power User, I don’t think I had a functioning device that didn’t have an Apple Logo on it. If it was an Apple Product or Service, I wanted to use it.
In January 2017, I dropped off of the Apple device train for about a year and a half, shifting to the Android Eco System for a little bit – I won’t lie, I loved it. There’s just some functionality that Android offers that I simply can’t match on an Apple Device, but in the end, I just had to go back to iOS for the phone world due to simplicity of everything, and the integrated apps like iMessage, and Apple Pay… but this isn’t about iOS vs. Android – this is about the fact that even as an Android user, I kept Apple Music. It allowed access to my iTunes purchases on the go, which was a huge selling point for me. But, not three months later, I decided that I was just going to drop streaming. By this point, I had learned the ins and outs of Google Play Services, and figured out how to upload all of my iTunes purchases to my Google Play Library (not difficult at all, but learning curve).
By April 2018, I had replaced my Android phone three times, all for different issues, and decided that enough was enough, I’m going back to an iPhone. I briefly considered a Pixel as I had moved everything over to Google accounts, but the fact of the matter was that I missed things like my iTunes Library being right there, iMessage, Handoff, Apple Pay and Airdrop. I was able to swing an iPhone 8 at the time, which I’m still using. When I came back into the iOS world, I was able to get three months free of Apple Music, so I took advantage of it. It had evolved a bit in the year since I dropped it, and wound up deciding to keep it. Apple Music had begun to do some of the compilations, and recommendations that Spotify did, which I greatly appreciated. But I noticed that they didn’t really change much. I missed that Spotify gave you different mixes daily, as well as a “Weekly Discovery,” which I very often would listen to multiple times during the week.
About three weeks ago, as we were starting to lock everything down, I downloaded Spotify again to see what had changed in the four and a half years since I had dropped it, and not much as far as the UI goes, I was actually glad to see that, but there is also Podcast integration, which I had heard about on a Leo Laporte show a few months prior. I decided to give Spotify another run, and cancelled my Apple Music subscription. Sorry Apple, but you can handle this betrayal.