One of the most annoying things about listening to Spotify’s free version is the constant ad interruptions, which are almost certainly designed to make you want to start paying.
As such, it’s natural to wonder if Apple Music, Spotify’s greatest competitor, suffers from the same issue.
Here’s Why Apple Music Doesn’t Have Ads:
Apple Music is purely a subscription service with no free version. Because a paid subscription is required to use Apple Music, no advertisements exist, and the service lacks an ad-supported free version. Apple Music revenue is generated from subscription fees and data collection.
Why Isn’t There a Free Version of Apple Music?
Apple Music only offers a paid subscription plan, which enables it to do away with advertisements entirely.
Theoretically, a free option would still generate Apple revenue through advertisements, but it seems that Apple isn’t confident this ad revenue would be enough. With ad revenue, some customers might ignore the ads and never be motivated to make any purchases or use ad blockers to circumvent them.
By forcing users to pay, they are trading potential ad revenue for a lot more direct revenue in the form of subscription fees.
How Much Does a Subscription to Apple Music Cost?
Apple Music offers several different subscription models, which range in cost from $4.99 to $14.99, plus an additional, hidden cost we’ll talk about in a bit.
Since Apple Music offers so many different tiers of subscription, let’s take a minute first to break down the costs and benefits of each:
- $4.99 – Voice Plan: Full access to music and basic features, but only on Apple devices.
- $5.99 – Student Plan: A cheaper version of the individual plan for college students must submit proof of student status, the same as the individual plan.
- $9.99 – Individual Plan:Everything in the voice plan, additional device support, optional lossless audio, lyrics view, download option, and social features.
- $14.99 – Family Plan: Everything is in the individual plan but with full access for up to six people, each with their recommendations and libraries.
The most important takeaway is that there are two core plans: individual and voice. The other two are just specialized versions of the individual plan.
The student plan is identical to the individual plan but only available to students and a bit cheaper.
The family plan is identical to the individual plan but for more people at once. The voice plan is the closest you’ll get to a free version regarding those two core plans.
Of course, it’s not free, it costs five bucks a month, but for that very low cost, you get everything core to the experience of Apple Music: the music.
The Individual plan adds some nice features like a lyrics view and lossless audio, but if you don’t care about bells and whistles like that, the Voice plan will serve you just fine.
Does Apple Music Have In-House Ads?
Supposedly ad-free services will still include “in-house” ads, meaning advertisements for their products and services.
Most internet ads are by third parties, meaning companies other than the one whose service you’re using now.
If Apple Music had in-house ads, it would mean having banner ads for iTunes, Apple devices, etc.
To their credit, however, Apple Music appears to be committed to maintaining a completely ad-free environment, including a lack of in-house advertisements.
Do Podcasts on Apple Music Still Have Ads?
Podcasts included with Apple Music are as ad-free as the music and anything else on the service.
Apple Music doesn’t have ads, be they third-party or in-house, and there’s no reason to expect this to be any different for their podcasts.
After all, they’re part of the same service, benefiting from the same ad-free model.