Plugged In

Sarah Harris

The Internet is full of different places to listen to music. As iTunes slowly fades away, more and more music listening platforms appear. Whether it’s a monthly fee, free music or an arrangement of ads in exchange for music, each platform offers something different.

Here are a few platforms that offer different things and now you can choose which platform is for you.



  • Free

  • No advertisements

  • Available on smartphones

SoundCloud is a platform that is based in Berlin. If you like to create and share your own music, this platform is for you. Unlike YouTube, it doesn’t have to be a video, it’s solely for music. SoundCloud lets its users comment directly on the track. Users are able to repost songs, follow other users and create playlists. The con about SoundCloud is that it doesn’t have tons of music by artists. It’s a great tool to find covers of songs and completely original music. “Uploading is fast and easy plus you can find and download music legally. It’s also easy to send your own recordings out,” said Greg Mayer, sophomore.


  • Free

  • Advertisements

  • Available on smartphones

About almost everyone has used Pandora before. Type in a song and Pandora creates a playlist for you to listen to. Downfall about Pandora is that you cannot create your own playlist so you might come across songs you don’t like and you can only skip songs so many times. But it’s a great way to find songs you’ve never heard before. “I like Pandora because I can pick an artist and then it will show me similar artist so that I can find new music that I’m into,” said freshman Emily Hansen.


  • Free

  • Very few ads

  • Available on smartphones

8tracks is a platform that is made up of playlists that other people have made. The website controls copyright but doesn’t control which songs you put on playlists. The best thing about 8tracks is that you are able to type in a feeling or genre (up to three different adjectives) similar to Pandora and you’re able to choose from whatever playlist you would like. You can favorite songs and playlists so that you can go back and listen to them when you want. “It’s super specific, like there’s a different mood, unlike Pandora where you just pick a song and it’s everything like that, but 8tracks is super personal, and it’s always playing a good song,” said junior Arthur Lane.

Hype Machine

  • Free

  • No ads

  • Available on iPhone and BlackBerry 10

Hype machine is the best place to go when looking for remixes of your favorite songs. This is where you find emerging artists before anyone else does. This website even featured Lorde in the beginning of last summer. You are able to favorite songs but cannot create different playlists. You will probably not be able to find this music anywhere else but YouTube, and that is only sometimes. “Hype Machine gives remixes and a different kind of variety that I like better than Pandora,” said Tyler Melanson, sophomore.


  • Free on desktop

  • Few ads

  • Available on smartphones (But only a limited version that includes only the playlists you have, and shuffles through them, otherwise it’s a monthly fee)

Spotify is basically the new iTunes but everything is free on your desktop, and 10 times better. It’s a dynamic platform where you can create your own playlist and other people can follow you, listen to and favorite your playlists. The only con is you can’t listen to your music on your phone unless you pay $10 a month. “I use spotify because, it takes what I like and gives me a lot of suggestions. So they’ll email me and let me know about bands I don’t know about, and it expands my musical library,” said Rob Cowen, freshman.



  • Free on desktop

  • Ads

  • Available on smartphones for monthly fee

Rdio is a platform where you can find full albums, very similar to Spotify. Rdio offers music right when it comes out, you are able to create playlist and add full albums to your page. Rdio gives you a link to buy the music if you would like. Your personal library is made up of albums rather than songs and they offer a radio feature where it takes all albums in your library, shuffles them, then streams them.