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TIDAL Free: Everything you need to know (Updated 2022)

Tidal may not be the most subscribed-to music streaming service on the market, but it definitely gives Spotify and Apple Music a run for their money. With exclusive music releases, live performances, and twice as many songs to choose from, it seems like a no brainer. Is it worth ditching your old music streaming service for Tidal? Read our Streaming Sites? review today to find out!


Nicole Sommer
Last updated: Tuesday, 03.October 2023
Author Biography
Hello. My name is Nicole Sommer. I am a big soccer enthusiast and do a lot of reserach around the easiest way to watch soccer on TV and online across the whole globe.
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From Drug Dealer to Billionaire

Jay-Z, born Shaun Carter, is widely recognized for many things. He is the archetypal hip-hop rags-to-riches story, rising from selling crack cocaine on street corners in New York City to becoming one of the most successful recording rap artists of all time. He is known for producing some of the most highly acclaimed and critically acclaimed hip hop albums of all time, including his debut release Reasonable Doubt, The Blueprint series, and The Black Album. He has also won a total of 24 Grammy Awards over the span of his nearly 30-year career, including a Special Salute to Industry Icons award in 2018 honoring his tireless work over the years.
Despite his beginnings as a street rapper, Jay-Z has since become one of the most successful businessmen in the music industry, with a career that spans over two decades. He is the founder and CEO of Roc-A-Fella Records, which later became Roc Nation Entertainment; he is also the owner of the Brooklyn Nets, which he bought in 2009 for $350 million; and he is married to Beyonce Knowles, who has been called "the world's most powerful woman" by many. Today, Jay-Z is a mogul in every sense of the word, having achieved incredible success both as a musician and businessman.
Despite all of Jay-Z's success, there is another product that often gets overshadowed by his towering successes- his audio streaming service, Tidal. This service has had a difficult time competing with the other subscription-based music streaming giants of the world, like Spotify and Apple Music.
Tidal has experienced ups and downs in its five years of existence, with regard to its userbase and success. Jay-Z and his team faced a dilemma when two other well-established, popular music streaming services were doing essentially the same thing as Tidal. How could Tidal differentiate itself?

An Exclusive Streaming Platform

The first answer to this question was to remove certain artists' discographies from other streaming services in hopes of luring dedicated fans away when they realized they could only stream certain artists on Tidal. This proved unsuccessful, however, as it seemed most people were content with their existing streaming service. Tidal also nabbed a few of the artists who refused to give Spotify and Apple Music rights to their music, adding to its air of exclusivity.
Furthering that notion, Tidal began offering exclusive releases, live performances, singles, and music videos. This was to be their 'thing' that sets them apart from the pack, to offer things that only Tidal could offer. They began obtaining the rights to release certain albums a week earlier than all other streaming services and they are still following this model to this day. For example, Kanye West's recent opera, Nebuchadnezzar, was live-streamed as a Tidal exclusive. If you weren't there for the performance of it at the Hollywood Bowl in California on November 24th 2019, Tidal was your only means of watching it.
But how does Tidal compare to the other music and audio streaming services, with regard to performance, sound quality, selection, customized features, and site/app design? And is a Tidal subscription worth the monthly subscription fee? Let's take a look at Tidal, shall we? Who knows, maybe today's readers will be converts to the Tidal cause.

Two-Tiered Subscription

First, let's look at the price. Because the way that Tidal tiers its subscription packages is different from many of the other services out there, there is the baseline premium subscription to Tidal, which is comparable to what Spotify and Apple Music offer. It is $9.99 per month. And in exchange, you get standard sound quality, HD music videos, and expertly curated editorial playlists made just for you. This baseline premium plan also comes as a family package for only $5 more a month, allowing you to add 6 accounts total to the plan.
Additionally, Tidal offers a High Fidelity version of its service at about twice the price of the premium package. For $19.99 per month, users receive lossless High Fidelity sound quality in addition to all of the services that come with a premium. So, essentially, Tidal expects some of its subscribers to pay around $20 a month just for the improved sound quality.
And, hey, this may seem laughable at first, but don't underestimate the niche demographic of true audiophiles around the world. There are plenty of people who value quality audio and will certainly pay $20 per month for it. Plus, Tidal prides itself on being the streaming service that pays the most to artists in royalties; so, if you have the extra cash, it can't hurt to know that your money is going to the artists you spend your time listening to.
What does Tidal offer in exchange for your monthly subscription? Well, they claim to have a library of over 60 million songs and 250,000 HD music videos. That's not bad at all. In fact, as far as the quantity of songs is concerned, Tidal has twice as much music available as Spotify, which reports having over 30 million individual tracks. So, maybe there is something to all of this Tidal buzz after all.

By the Artists for the Fans

Another thing that Tidal offers that other music streaming services do not is a constantly updated list of curated playlists. Now, we aren’t talking playlists that were thrown together by plugging an algorithm into a computer. No, these are lists that are hand-selected by music journalists, artists, and other professionals who actually know and love music. It adds a certain human touch to Tidal’s playlists that you won’t really find anywhere else, even furthering the platform’s reputation as a streaming service for serious fans and artists.
So overall, I would say that Tidal is a pretty strong contender against its competitors. All of this makes Tidal look attractive so far if you ask me. But what about the platform's usability? It's one thing to have an impressive list of features and unique gimmicks, but none of it amounts to much if the user experience isn't seamless and streamlined. In other words, how does Tidal itself, the site and the app, stack up against the competition in terms of design? Well, honestly, it's just as intuitive (if not more so) than Spotify and Apple Music. It offers a sleek design that you will immediately know how to use without having to stumble around whatsoever. So overall, I would say that Tidal is a pretty strong contender against its competitors.

Great Site and App Design

The last section is devoted to new releases, followed by a number of recommendations. On the home page of Tidal, you will find a variety of sections organized clearly for you to browse and play. The top of the page features featured artists, albums, and playlists. Next, you will find lists of timely playlists. Currently with Christmas and the New Year right around the corner, there is a section dedicated specifically to holiday playlists and the best of the year. The last section is devoted to new releases. Following these are a number of recommendations.
Below, you'll find a few artist spotlight playlists on Tidal, which provide a glimpse into artists you may not be as familiar with if based on what fans are listening to them. Following that is a list of new tracks, albums, popular playlists and featured playlists that only make Tidal's experience even more unique.
Through its Tidal Rising section, Tidal offers a huge selection of up and coming artists, which makes it easier than ever to find new music and stay ahead of the curb on what's next to dominate the music industry. Then, of course, you have a menu from which you can access all of your own playlists, mixes, albums, tracks, and music videos. And an Explore tab that allows you to browse Tidal's massive music library by genre. You may not get quite as customized experience as Spotify offers, but you should have no problem discovering new songs and artists.
All in all, if you are looking for an exclusive experience than either Spotify or Apple Music can provide, Tidal is going to be your best bet. If you want everything that the other music streaming services offer and more, Tidal will be for you. Whether you choose the basic premium membership or the lossless audio quality HIFI option, your Tidal experience is bound to be a positive one.
Nicole Sommer
Nicole Sommer is a true soccer fan and loyal supporter of FC Arsenal and 1.FC Köln. She plays actively her self as central forward in the women's aquad of TuS Köln in Germany. In her spare time she spends a lot of time online including researching the soccer streaming space. Her research has been published in several online soccer magazines.
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TIDAL Free: Everything you need to know (Updated 2022).

Tidal may not be the most subscribed-to music streaming service on the market, but it definitely gives Spotify and Apple Music a run for their money. With exclusive music releases, live performances, and twice as many songs to choose from, it seems like a no brainer. Is it worth ditching your old music streaming service for Tidal? Read our Streaming Sites? review today to find out!

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