If you’ve been contemplating grabbing all the music from your hard drive and leaping up into the cloud with it, first see our comprehensive primer on how to do that with a subscription service, a music locker, or both.
The first option listed there — the online music subscription, which not only lets you listen to your old, legacy downloads, but also any of 15-20 million songs — is by far the best option for music fans who don’t already own all the music they want to listen to for the rest of their lives.
If that’s looking good to you, maybe it’ll look a little better now that half of these services are offering special summer deals (and all of them have some kind of bargain right now). Regardless of which service looks good to you, personally, you’ll find something in this list that will save you some cash as you wallow in 20 million or so of tracks — something that would cost you about one-twelfth of what Jeff Bezos paid for the Washington Post, were you to do it in iTunes.
There’s not a lot of action on MOG these days, because Beats Electronics bought it to form the infrastructure of an as-yet-unreleased service called Daisy, which has since been spun of from Beats as a standalone company. The only bargain on MOG right now is a 14-day free trial. Still, if you’re the adventurous type and you like the sound of Daisy’s celebrity-curated whatever-it’s-going-to-be (we don’t know, because we’ve asked Daisy several times for details and it’s not talking), it’s possible that signing up for MOG might get you grandfathered in there. But really, the true summer bargains are further down on this list.
It’s too late to score this great-looking Rdio/Vdio deal, but Rdio lets non-paying subscribers listen to a certain amount of free music each month on the web, with a 14-day free trial on mobile devices. It’s not offering a special deal at the moment, but as always, it offers a unique family plan: $18/month for two people, $23 for three people, $28 for four people, or $33 for five people.
The best premium subscription music deal right now is Rhapsody, which is offering three months of ad-free, on-demand music for a single dollar. You’ll have to put down a credit card, so set a reminder on your calendar three months from now, at which point you can decide whether to keep it. But still… a dollar. For the price of a single iTunes download, you can get unlimited summer jams, on all your devices, well into the fall.
Unlike the other services on this list, Spotify lets you use it forever, without paying, if you’re willing to put up with ads and to use it only with a computer (i.e. no smartphones, tablets, or televisions). If you want to play it on your smartphone, as most of us do, Spotify’s pricing structure is identical to the others on this list. However, Spotify just launched an affiliate program that gets you free music when you convince other people to sign up. For every five of your friends and family who sign up for Spotify through you, you get a free month of Spotify Premium, a $10 value. This “Spotify friends” program is only available in the U.S.
(Photo courtesy of Flickr/the justified sinner)