A few moments before Apple announced its HiFi plan, Amazon announced that its higher-quality music plan, Amazon Music HD, is now available to Amazon Music Unlimited subscribers at no extra cost.
As first reported by Billboard, Amazon Music HD, which previously cost $14.99 a month and $12.99 for Prime Members, is now available to everyone with Amazon Music Unlimited, which costs $9.99 month and $7.99 for Prime members.
With that, Amazon is the company offering a cheaper HiFi plan in the music streaming war. Apple Music is also following the same path, introducing Apple Music HiFi at no extra cost for subscribers. On the other hand, Spotify recently raised its prices for regular streaming quality, and Deezer, for example, charges extra for its HiFi plan.
“It’s something we’ve all we’ve been wanting to do for a long time,” says Amazon Music VP Steve Boom to Billboard. “When we launched, we already broke the mold by taking a service that had been $19.99 — and really just for the audiophile at that price point — and brought it down to something that was much more mass-market at $14.99.”
Amazon Music HD has more than 70 million lossless CD-quality songs in HD (16-bit/44.1 kHz) and over 7 million Ultra HD songs (24-bit/48kHz, 96 kHz, 192 kHz), which are effectively studio masters. Apple Music is following a similar path, with its ALAC codec.
Apple Music’s Lossless tier starts at CD quality, which is 16 bit at 44.1 kHz (kilohertz), and goes up to 24 bit at 48 kHz and is playable natively on Apple devices. For the true audiophile, Apple Music also offers Hi-Resolution Lossless all the way up to 24 bit at 192 kHz.1
Amazon Music HD is already available to subscribers to Amazon Music Unlimited in the US, UK, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, and Spain. Current Amazon Music HD subscribers will now be charged $5 less a month on their future billing cycles, according to Billboard.
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