Can Jay-Z's Tidal beat Spotify and Apple? Here's the cost, subscription details and everything you need to know
The rapper Trizz sparked a lively debate after he noted Tidal pays artists more than Apple or Spotify, but fans still don't want to use it
Jay-Z's streaming platform Tidal, a high-fidelity music streaming service that also counts Beyoncé, Lil Wayne and other stars as co-owners, recently sparked a lively debate on Twitter regarding the pros and cons of the subscription-based platform. It all started after the LA-based rapper Trizz noted on July 31 that Tidal pays artists more than Apple or Spotify, but fans still don't want to use it.
Trizz, who has independently released his own music in the past, bemoaned this sad state of affairs when he tweeted, "For 100,000 streams Spotify pays $400.....Apple pays $600.....Tidal pays $2,800. Unfortunately, none of y’all f**k with Tidal....it’s either Spotify or Apple Music....lol the black business pays more and gets the least amount of love. Smh [Shaking my head].
For 100,000 streams Spotify pays $400.....Apple pays $600.....Tidal pays $2,800. Unfortunately none of y’all fuck with Tidal....it’s either Spotify or Apple Music....lol the black business pays more and gets the least amount of love. Smh— Trizz (@Tr1zz) July 31, 2020
Prior to that, Trizz had noted: "Spotify CEO [Daniel Ek] basically said it's the artist fault for not putting out enough music to make the money that we complain about not making on Spotify. Yea tell that to Jay-Z and Tidal...they pay real good."
Spotify CEO basically said its the artist fault for not putting out enough music to make the money that we complain about not making on Spotify. Yea tell that to Jay-Z and Tidal...they pay real good.— Trizz (@Tr1zz) July 31, 2020
He then put out an open question, asking "Can I ask why y’all don’t use Tidal? What’s wrong with it?"
Can I ask why y’all don’t use Tidal? What’s wrong with it?— Trizz (@Tr1zz) July 31, 2020
Plenty of music lovers responded as to why they were fans of the high-quality service or had instead chosen to pass on it. One fan said it was genuine fire:
Tidal fire to me and everything bout it better from the music to the media on there https://t.co/v3XOXZPneX— I hate small talk (@ThatsLudaChriss) July 31, 2020
Another fan sang Tidal's praises as well:
There’s so many good things about tidal. Tidal has the largest music library not only that you can sync your playlist from other apps so you don’t gotta start all over , not to mention they have the best high res audio option on the market. 😊 I fw tidal tough https://t.co/HlTGpjOIy7— 🍼 (@gigiss__) July 31, 2020
But another fan noted that they had a rough go of it in the beginning:
The initial rollout of the platform was super rocky. They promised "exclusive releases from today's biggest artists" and totally fumbled the one chance they got at that with the Kanye record. I didn't mind the higher price point, but I know that discouraged a lot of other people.— 𝐉𝐮𝐬𝐭𝐢𝐧 𝐁𝐚𝐢𝐥𝐞𝐲 (@iamJustinBailey) July 31, 2020
After a fan erroneously pointed out: "The more users a streaming service has, the less they pay per 100,000 streams," Tidal themselves got wind of the debate on Twitter and clarified, "TIDAL’s royalty rate does not depend on the number of users that use the service and we do have a strong emphasis on making sure we pay fair royalty share to the license holders."
It's clear that Tidal holds artists and great quality music high on their list of priorities. After all, the company is co-owned by a large number of musicians themselves, with Jay-Z, Beyoncé, Lil Wayne, Alicia Keys, Calvin Harris, T.I., Coldplay, Daft Punk, Deadmau5, Jack White, Win Butler and Regine Chassagne of Arcade Fire all having a stake in the company. Thanks to this, Tidal can offer exclusive music in its vast catalog of over 60 million songs, besides other perks like music videos, podcasts, concerts and professionally curated playlists. The company also stated, “Tidal pays the highest ratio of royalties vs. revenues to music creators of any streaming service, and equal rates are paid to artists regardless of whether they’re signed to a major label, an indie label, or not signed to a label at all.”
Besides being available on both desktop and mobile, the Tidal app is really well designed for a great user experience. There are four subscription rates for Tidal Premium: standard, family, student, and military, which are changed every 30 days. Both the student and military packages offer discounted rates. For Tidal Premium, the standard pack costs $9.99 a month, family costs $14.99 a month, while students can pay $4.99 and military members pay $5.99 a month. There's also a higher-quality membership tier called Tidal Hi-Fi, which offers lossless streaming like CD-quality FLAC files, and even high-resolution (96kHz/24bit) MQA audio which has been authenticated by the artistes themselves. For Tidal Hi-Fi, the standard pack costs $19.99 a month, family costs $29.99 a month, while students can pay $9.99 and military members pay $11.99 a month.
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So if you're looking to support a paid streaming service that really cares about the music and the people who make them, Tidal is a great option.