Best Music Apps for iOS and Android

By Andrew Buck | Updated on
Best Music Apps

Music streaming growth just keeps blowing up, and it’s still going to grow for years – there’s wealth of music apps available on both Android and iOS that can woo listeners with newer features.

There are lots of music streaming services to choose from these days, with new offerings entering the market every month or so, but we have reviewed the best music apps out there which always keeps updating its features and music library. Some are free-of-charge, but many of the best require a subscription fee or even in-app purchases.

Recent research shows that listening to music improves our mental well-being and boosts our physical health in surprising and astonishing ways. Music can help you learn and recall information better, but it depends on how much you like the music and whether or not you’re a musician.

Here’s some of our favorite list of best music apps whether you're looking to simply listen to music, learn musical skills, or create your own tunes.

1. Gibson Guitar (free/subscription)

Gibson App is an excellent supplementary tool for learning songs or practicing technique and timing. Gibson App uses interactive real-time feedback mixed with video lessons.

Learning songs in a fun way is the Gibson App’s biggest advantage. Even though the interface is not the entertaining as Ubisoft’s Rocksmith, it gets you through all the right notes and timing. You can pick different difficulty levels for songs and go from strumming the chords to playing them exactly like in the record.


  • Easy to navigate and progressive path to learning guitar fundamentals and songs
  • Video lessons are blended into the App
  • Access to Gibson TV and a free virtual guitar tech meeting
  • Continuously updated songs
  • 14 days free trial
  • Exceptional mobile tuner

Devices: Android, iPhone, iPad

Download on Android Download on iOS

2. Spotify (free/subscription)

Spotify is the best-known music streaming app which lets you listen to tunes from major labels on the web or via one of the many official Spotify apps. Spotify is a completely legal way to stream music online and listen to podcasts. Spotify always enforces the importance of music in education and giving children and students the resources to be able to learn and experience music.

Despite increasing competition, Spotify is still hands-down our favorite music streaming app. With the regular addition of new features, like super-smart playlists, podcasts and social sharing tools, Discover Weekly and Spotify Connect, it feels like the service is coming of age and growing with its user base. You can download playlists and albums inside Spotify to guard against network outages.

Spotify also offers a great selection of playlists that have been created for all kinds of genres and moods. On the web or the desktop app you can play any track, album or playlist at any time or in any order, which is pretty good.

Discover Weekly feature tracks and artists you may not have heard, but which Spotify thinks you'll like. Spotify's Your Time Capsule feature guesses the songs you'd have loved in your teens – and it's scarily accurate. Spotify Connect is one of the most important features for anyone with a Wi-Fi-enabled wireless speaker.

It’ll recommend podcasts and individual episodes, and also allow you to pick ones based on your interests, from stories and games to news and politics. From soundtracking your run with Runkeeper, to seeing what potential matches are listening to on Tinder, Spotify can be integrated with many other awesome apps.

Spotify Student

If you are a student enrolled at an accredited college or university, and above the age of 18, then yes. You can get Premium for Students for up to four years.

Spotify Family Plan

Those with loved ones who also want to stream music may be more interested in the Spotify Family Premium, which costs $15.99/month (in US) and £16.99/month (in UK), and lets you have up to six people under one account.

Spotify app is totally free to download, and there’s no cost for basic features such as playing music. To listen to music on the go, download Spotify from the Google Play or Apple app store. If you're unable to download the app, you can play music from your browser using Spotify web player.

Devices: Android, iPhone, iPad, Mac, Windows. You can play on many more devices too, with wireless connections such as Spotify Connect, Bluetooth, Apple AirPlay, Chromecast, Alexa, Google Assistant, and more.

3. Google Play Music (free/subscription)

Google Play Music is a free music app that grants you full access to your cloud-based music collection on the go and from the Play Music website. Combining the services of Spotify and Apple Music, Google Play Music is a music streaming service for listening to your own music while away from your computer. Google Play Music offers more than 40 million songs to purchase, download and streaming.

The free version of Play Music still allows you to upload your own music collection online so that you can stream it from wherever you are. The ability to upload 50,000 songs means most people can store their entire collection online, creating both an easy way to stream your music but also a good backup solution. The other cool feature about Google Play Music is its awesome integration with platforms like Amazon’s Alexa, as well as Google’s own Chromecast. With a Chromecast or Chromecast Audio device, you can play music from Google Play Music from your phone to whatever device your Chromecast is hooked up to, and from anywhere in your home, too!

Google Play Music subscription

The best way to get Google Play Music for free is by taking advantage of the 30-day trial.

A paid subscription to Google Play Music unlocks the ability to listen to songs from Google Play’s library on demand and ad-free. Create and share playlists up to 1,000 songs each, discover new music through recommendations based on your listening habits and skip songs as you like.

Subscribers can download albums and playlists from the Google Play Music catalog to a mobile device for listening without the Internet. However, you can access your music only through Google Play Music app.

A Google Play Music subscription also gives you complete access to YouTube Red, which offers an ad-free YouTube experience, along with giving you the ability to play YouTube content offline.

Google Play Music Individual plan

For $9.99 a month, your Google Play Music subscription offers: ad-free, on-demand streaming of more than 40 million songs, Albums and playlists for downloading and listening offline on your mobile device.

Google Play Music Family plan

For $14.99 a month, your whole family can get in on the music-streaming life: Share a subscription between yourself and up to six family members, Share purchased apps, games, books, music and movies in the Family Library.

Devices: Android, iPhone, iPad and Chrome OS

4. Deezer (free/subscription)

Despite being one of Spotify’s oldest rivals, Deezer still brings a more diverse song catalog than Google Play Music or Apple Music.

Deezer has tonnes of playlists divided up by genre and mood, although it is bit overstretched and confusing at times. Deezer actually has 2 differentiating features: its Flow playlist and its ‘karaoke-style’ lyrics feature.

Deezer’s Flow playlist is basically the app’s main playlist for you. It plays the songs it thinks you’ll love, based on the artists, songs, and albums you’ve ‘liked’ on Deezer. Also, Deezer’s karaoke-style lyrics are one-of-a-kind. Basically, the lyrics are highlighted as they are sung in the song, so it makes it easier to memorize and sing along to.

The Deezer app is free to download and all users can enjoy our catalog of over 53 million tracks. To listen to music on the move, download the Deezer app for your mobile or tablet (Android, iOS and Windows).

Deezer for Students

Expand your music collection this semester. With Deezer Student, you get all the benefits of Deezer Premium for half the price of a full year. With Deezer Student, you can download your tunes on WiFi and listen offline wherever you go.

Deezer for Families

On Deezer Family, everyone can enjoy their own music collection at the same time. With up to 6 Deezer Premium profiles on just one account, you can all listen with no adverts and unlimited downloads. Kids' only profiles mean nursery rhymes and cartoon characters for the kiddos, all the latest hits for your tweens and no more listening to either for you.

Devices: Android, iPhone, iPad, Desktop app, web player

5. Apple Music (subscription)

Like rival services, the core of Apple Music is a catalogue of recordings, few million songs – to stream “on demand”, with recommendations, themed playlists and radio-like stations to help people navigate it.

Using Apple Music, you can sort by artists, albums, songs, genres and composers and you can download albums or playlists to listen to offline.

Apple Music has one differentiating feature from other popular streaming apps: its ‘Connect’ feature. This feature lets you to follow bands, artists or individual curators and then you'll get a feed with all the updates that these people choose to share.

The New section of Apple Music points you towards new releases, top charts, topical playlists, hot new bands, recommended music videos and other genre-specific options. Apple Music: Radio section (Beats 1) is your way of letting Apple Music choose what you listen to.

If your country or region doesn't have Google Play, download the Apple Music app from the Apple website.

Apple Music Student subscription

Students enrolled in degree-granting universities and colleges can join Apple Music at a discounted monthly rate.

Apple Music Family subscription

Each member of an Apple Music Family subscription gets unlimited access to the entire Apple Music catalog, music recommendations tailored to their personal music tastes, and access to their own iCloud Music Library, which makes it possible for them to listen to their music on all of their favorite devices. Families of up to six people can enjoy all of the benefits of Apple Music.

Devices: Android, iPhone and iPad

Download Apple Music

6. Pandora (free/subscription)

Pandora has been a long-standing popular choice with excellent free options. It boasts a wide selection of songs from a variety of genres and artists. You get to select from different radio stations filled with songs from your favorite artists.

Pandora Premium includes all the benefits of Plus in addition to the ability to search and play songs on-demand, no timeouts, fully customizable playlists, and more offline listening options.

Apple Music has one differentiating feature from other popular streaming apps: its ‘Connect’ feature. This feature lets you to follow bands, artists or individual curators and then you'll get a feed with all the updates that these people choose to share.

Pandora is only available in the U.S. right now – but they are working on bringing their music service to other parts of the world.

Check out the Pandora App on Android and iOS. Pandora is compatible with FitBit, Apple Watch®, and Wear OS, so you can take your music wherever you go—from workouts to work, and all the errands in between.

Pandora Music Student Plan

While there is no student discount, coupon codes for free months have been periodically spotted on discount and coupon sites such as Groupon.

Pandora Music Family Plan

It has a competitively priced plan that allows up to six people to play music on-demand, along with other premium features. A free 60-day trial of the Pandora Premium Family plan can be had for those wary of taking the plunge.

Devices: Android, iPhone and iPad

Download Pandora Music app

7. iHeartRadio (free)

iHeartRadio lets you stream radio from over 1,500 live radio stations or create custom stations based on a song or artist. iHeartRadio attempts to merge live radio and a curated catalog, but the streaming music service lacks many of the features found in its rivals and its interface is clunky in places.

iHeartRadio's live radio stations can be browsed by local ones around you as well as by other cities and particular genres. A history of the songs you've listened to is kept online, which you can view in the Listen History section of the website. Any of your favorite stations can be set up as an alarm on your mobile device. The app also limits the number of songs you can skip per day.

Most music streaming services play an audible advertisement between so many songs, but iHeartRadio has zero commercials. There are image ads in the app, but nothing will interrupt your music, which is fantastic.

Devices: Android, iPhone, iPad, Windows

8. Amazon Prime Music (free/subscription)

Though Amazon has two music streaming services (Prime Music and Amazon Music Unlimited), the latter is a comparable one to Spotify or Apple Music.

Amazon Music Unlimited gives you all the features such as ad-free listening, ability to download songs, unlimited skips, larger selection in overall songs and available playlists. It support multiple bit rates.

Apple Music has one differentiating feature from other popular streaming apps: its ‘Connect’ feature. This feature lets you to follow bands, artists or individual curators and then you'll get a feed with all the updates that these people choose to share.

Amazon Music Unlimited offer Prime Playlists – handcrafted collections of songs from Amazon’s Prime Music catalogue. The type of music you’re listening to can be filtered by searching or picking a mood or genre.

Amazon Music Student Plan

Amazon Music Unlimited for Students is a streaming music subscription, discounted for students that are currently enrolled in a recognised degree-granting university. Students can get a 50% discount.

Amazon Music Family Plan

Amazon’s family plan allows two adults and four children to register with one account and access benefits such as one-day delivery and Prime Video. Each family member has an Amazon account with personalised recommendations.

As a Prime member, you can join Amazon Music Unlimited for $8.99/month for a monthly subscription or $89/year for an annual subscription. Non-Prime customers pay $9.99/month. You and your family can stream music on up to 6 devices at the same time.

Devices: Android, iPhone, iPad, Echo and fire TV

9. YouTube Music (free/subscription)

YouTube Music is an extremely simple app. Library is the place where you will find all of your downloads, saved music, recently played songs and playlists, everything that you have liked, and artists you have subscribed to. The Hotlist is essentially YouTube’s trending page but exclusively for music. Home is a constantly updated list of music and videos tailored to your taste and to your location.

YouTube Music has an easy-to-use discovery and search features no other streaming service can top and keep you listening music with the same library full of live performances, covers from unsigned artists, and random songs. YouTube’s recommendation engine is on par with Spotify’s. You can keep music playing in the background when using other apps or when your screen is off.

YouTube Music Premium easily explores the world of music ad-free, offline and with the screen locked.

YouTube Music Student Plan

There aren't any specific discount plans for students yet.

YouTube Music Family Plan

A YouTube family plan allows you to share your YouTube paid membership with up to 5 other family members – aged 13 and older – living in the same household (residential address).

YouTube Music app is available for both iOS and Android devices. YouTube Music Premium members can listen ad-free on smart speakers, and request albums, songs, and playlists on-demand.

Devices: Android, iPhone and iPad

Download YouTube Music app

10. SoundCloud (free)

SoundCloud is a listening and sharing platform for uploading streamable audio files to the Web. Like the YouTube of audio, content varies greatly. From amateur to professional, users include musicians of every genre, comedians, spoken-word artists, podcasters, voice-over artists, teachers, and newscasters among many others. Teens can listen to music on SoundCloud without creating an account, but if they want to upload music, they have to sign up with an email address or through Facebook or Google+.

SoundCloud is a platform where anyone can upload audio files to the web. It's a lot like YouTube, but with audio instead of videos. The overall tone of the site is positive and generally more serious than YouTube. Although plenty of teens use it, SoundCloud is geared mostly toward adults.

Teens can learn a lot about creating and sharing music with SoundCloud. In addition to posting songs, podcasts, stories, and other audio files to the web, teens can also discover files that are much more diverse than what mainstream sources offer. SoundCloud allows users to tag comments at specific points in an audio file. Because of this, teens can give and get feedback, critique, and praise that's specific to a certain point in a work. The commenting feature is a great way to get experience with critique, but teens could benefit from more guidance on how to be constructive.

Devices: Android, iPhone and iPad

11. Shazam (free)

Shazam is one of the world's most popular apps, used by more than 100 million people each month to identify music, get song lyrics, and now to discover the music that artists discover themselves.

For the music lovers, this is like next to impossible to live without apps like Shazam. Whenever you hear some music playing and it sounds catchy enough you can immediately recognize that song via Shazam

To use the app, tap the Shazam button when you hear a song you’d like to know more about. Shazam then creates a digital fingerprint of the audio, and matches it against the app’s database of millions of tracks and TV shows. You’re then given the name of the track, the artist, and information including lyrics, recommended tracks and artist biography.

Devices: Android, iPhone and iPad

Download Shazam app

12. Musixmatch Lyrics (free/subscription)

Another one in the list of apps like Shazam is musiXmatch which is available for both iOS and Android users. This app is more used for lyrics finding rather than for identifying the songs but I think this is quite relatable with each other and you are going to know how.

MusiXmatch is the world’s largest lyrics collection app which not only allows you to know about a song’s lyrics playing around you but also helps in translating for you too. You can easily link this app with Spotify, Pandora, SoundHound, YouTube and get the lyrics of whichever song you want.

Whenever there is a song playing around you, all you need to do is just open this app and discover that song through musiXmatch easily. And as a bonus you also get the lyrics of that song too. Isn’t it just amazing?

This app also have a premium version which is a paid feature. There are also other in-app purchases in this app too. However, the basic uses like lyrics finding, music identifying are absolutely free.

13. TIDAL Music (free/subscription)

TIDAL bills itself as a music streaming service by musicians. It boasts over 48.5 million tracks, support in dozens of countries, and an ownership group of over a dozen musicians and entertainers. Some other features include 16-bit, CD quality audio (for $19.99 per month), Android TV support, curated playlists, an actual music blog, and over 130,000 music videos. Competitors generally have more features and gimmicks. However, TIDAL definitely caters more to serious fans of music rather than casual listeners. It and Deezer are the only two good options for audiophiles as well.

Tidal Music Subscription

Tidal has a massive amount of subscription options, split into Premium ($10 a month) for the standard service and HiFi ($20 a month) for completely lossless tracks. There are discounts available for Family accounts, students, and members of the U.S. military.

Download TIDAL Music

14. flowkey (free/subscription)

Flowkey is one of the easy and best way to learn piano. The app allows you to learn piano with the songs you love. flowkey is a series of courses to help people from the very beginnings to the more able develop their piano skills. It is aimed towards any student wanting to develop their understanding and keyboard skills, and covers not only the skills to play the keyboard, but also the theory behind this, development of this as a musician, and a range of songs to work through. The display is very simple to navigate and understand, and the course is really interesting and versatile.

Download flowkey app