Spotify vs iHeartRadio: 2024 Side-by-side Comparison

By Charles Davis Updated on 2024-2-26 / Update for Spotify Tips

Today, the prominence of music streaming services is increasing exceedingly. Besides, in the market, music lovers have developed a persistent taste for Spotify and iHeartRadio. But which is better, when Spotify vs iHeartRadio is put in a test?

They share the same market of music lovers, and they have over 100 million subscribers. Also, they are all the big players in the music streaming industry. But their distinctive feature creates the iHeartRadio vs. Spotify battle. Who appeals more to your ears? Let's put the two on the test in this review. Then you will have an in-depth view of who outcompete the other in the battle for music lovers' attention in the music streaming service industry.

iheartradio vs spotify

Spotify vs iHearRadio: Overview

What Is Spotify

Spotify is a streaming music giant which dates its origin back to October 2008. Literally, Spotify is the creator of the music streaming market. It is one of the world's biggest players in the music streaming market today, with over 200 million subscribers across the globe. But it is noted that it is not available in some countries and regions.

What's more, Spotify presents content like songs, playlists, albums, audiobooks, podcasts, etc. with DRM protection from record labels and media companies. But it allows its free and premium users to listen to music online via its app and web player. Premium users can even download Spotify music for listening offline.

Besides, Spotify offers lots of features for users. It allows users to create/edit/share playlists, crossfade Spotify music, adjust output audio quality via equalizer, etc.


What Is iHeartRadio

iHeartRadio is the USA terrestrial radio and podcast broadcasting giant owned by iHeartMedia and started in April 2008. The radio giant launched three paid music streaming subscriptions, iHeartRadio Plus, iHeartRadio All Access and iHeartRadio Family plans to users. With them, you can unlock all-you-can-eat tunes and take on streaming music service giants like Spotify.

Furthermore, iHeartRadio lets you listen to top radio stations, comedy and sports alike. And it allows you to enjoy live radio stations, and create customized stations & playlists according to your demands.


Both Spotify and iHeartRadio are giants in different ways. But let's dig deeper into specifics like music library, audio quality, music discovery, price, and other features and see who delivers what appeals to your ears in the following parts.

Music Library

When it comes to the music library of iHeartRadio vs Spotify, Spotify has the world's most extensive music collection with 70+ million tracks but features like "New Releases" expand its music library. Spotify's catalog is deep and incorporates exclusive live sessions and many new singles that provide the best way to listen to established and rising artists.

On the flip side, iHeartRadio has over 20 million tracks on its catalog and streaming radio from over 1500 AM and FM live radio station across the entire globe.

Verdict: Spotify is far ahead of iHeartRadio. It is nice for you to explore new music. If you like live radio, then you can go to iHeartRadio.

Audio Quality

Spotify allows you to choose the bitrate according to your listening experience. You can select from 24Kbps, 96Kbps, 128Kbps, 160Kbps, 256Kbps and 320Kbps depending on different subscriptions and devices. For Spotify Premium users, you can choose the streaming quality from Automatic to Very High. But many listeners won't notice the difference.

  iHeartRadio Spotify
Sound Quality AAC/MP3, 128Kbps OGG Vorbis,
On Web Player: 256Kbps (Premium Plan), 128Kbps (Free Plan)
On App: Up to 320Kbps (Premium Plan), 160Kbps (Free Plan)

Tips: When you are using a Spotify free account but like to explore a nice listening experience, AudFree Spotify Music Converter can help you to make it available. It can increase Spotify's bit rate from 160 kbps (for free users) to 320 kbps with ease and download Spotify music for offline playback freely.

audfree spotify music converter audio settings

At the same time, iHeartRadio streams at 128 kbps sound quality. You can also follow this tutorial to download and record iHeartRadio music to common audio files with high quality.

Verdict: Spotify's ability to select a bit rate, and offer a higher quality makes it a better option when compared to iHeartRadio.

Music Discovery

"What's new", "Top List", "Discover Weekly", "Made for You" and more can help you explore new music on Spotify. When you search for a specific artist, it has a near to perfect algorithm that presents the precise music you want to hear and won't play any other artist's music. Spotify also presents suggestions depending on your favorite artist through the "like", and "AI DJ" features that present music you like. While the "hide" feature that limits music that does not appeal to you.

View also:

How to Use Spotify AI DJ

How to Dislike a Song on Spotify

iHeartRadio is a solid tool for music discovery because of its Discovery Tuner utility. Besides, the radio channel often plays new music. If you have an iHeartRadio All Access tier, it has a killer feature that flawlessly interlinks the radio and the streaming library that instantly adds the music you desire to playlists. But the radio is subject to overplaying popular music which might inconvenience the discovery of new music.

Verdict: On music discovery, Spotify has more features to discover new music than iHeartRadio.

Plans and Price

Now, let's check Spotify Premium vs iHeartRadio All Access and other subscriptions in detail. By the way, both Spotify and iHeartRadio offer free services to users but with some limits.

iHeartRadio offers different music streaming experiences. First, there is an iHeartRadio Plus which goes for $4.99 per month. The tier acts like a souped-up version of the existing radio streaming app. It allows you to play any song on demand, replay songs from custom and live videos, get unlimited skips, and save songs from the radio to a playlist.

Second, there is an iHeartRadio All Access tier for $9.99 a month, which directly competes with the giants, like Spotify in the music streaming world. The subscription unlocks all the services in the Plus tier, plus offline listening, unlimited access to millions of songs and the ability to create unlimited playlists.

Third, it also offers a Family Plan to users which costs $14.99/month. Besides, this app also offers free playlists that are perfect for any moment. You can also go a notch higher and play free artist stations by creating personalized music stations that suit your preferences.

iheartradio subscription plans

On the other hand, Spotify has a $10.99 premium tier that offers a seamless experience across your entire library. No more ads, no more shuffle-only mode, unlimited skips, offline listening on Spotify, save up to 3,333 each on 3 devices, best-compressed bitrate of 320kbps and Spotify Connect which controls Spotify music across multiple devices. Also, there are Spotify Premium Duo for $14.99/month, Premium Family for $16.99/month and Premium Student for $5.99/month.

spotify premium price

  iHeartRadio Spotify
Price and Plans Plus: $4.99/month
All Access: $9.99/month
Family: $14.99/month, up to 6 accounts
Individual: $10.99/month, one account
Duo: $14.99/month, two accounts
Family: $16.99/month, up to 6 accounts
Student: $5.99/month, one account

Verdict: Both iHeartRadio and Spotify have a free basic plan. But Spotify Premium has tons of features compared to iHeartRadio, even though it costs more. By the way, now you can get and try a one-month free trial of Spotify Premium Individual and Student for free from its official website.

View also: How to Get Spotify Free Trial

Tips: Here we'd like to recommend you use AudFree Spotify Music Converter. By using it, you don't need to pay a monthly fee or expensive premium fee for Spotify to access the Spotify Premium feature. With AudFree program, you can download and save Spotify music files forever for listening offline.

User Interface and Experience

Here in this section, let's compare iHeartRadio vs Spotify user interface and experience.

Spotify has an intuitive user interface that allows users to browse and find different content for listening. Also, there are multiple languages for users to choose from. Besides, Spotify has over 100 million paid subscribers globally, the highest number of paying subscribers in the music streaming market. In total, it has over 217 million active users worldwide. The number is well ahead of any other music streaming service there is.

On the other hand, iHeartRadio has an easy UI with less content and it only provides English. iHeartRadio has a total of over 120 million users. The number of paid subscribers remains unknown, but it is pretty clear they provide an outstanding user experience.

As the data indicates, Spotify appears to interest music lovers more, both the free and paid subscribers. The high number of paying subscribers translates to an outstanding user experience people are willing to pay for.

Platforms and Devices Compatibility

Spotify can be used in a wide range of devices, including Android/iOS/Windows mobile phones and tablets, Windows/Mac/Linux desktops, smart speakers, smart TVs, game consoles and so on.

While iHeartRadio supports multiple devices like smart TVs, Windows & Mac computers, Android and iOS devices, Alexa, and so on.

View also: How to Play Spotify on Multiple Devices


You may want to know which country and region that Spotify and iHeartRadio supports. Now, let's dive into it.

Spotify is available in most countries and regions globally, including most of Europe, parts of Africa, and so on. iHeartRadio can be accessed in the United States, Canada, Australia, Mexico and other countries.

Social Integration

While listening to music, you may want to share with your friends or others if you find a wonderful track. So, does Spotify or iHeartRadio support socal sharing? Here let's learn more about it.

In fact, Spotify and iHeartRadio both allow users to share what they are listening to with others within its app. They can share via Facebook, Twitter, track links and so on.

View also: How to Share a Spotify Playlist

Offline Listening

Both iHeartRadio and Spotify support offline listening. But you need to have a Premium account as they only allow their Premium subscribers to download and listen to music offline. By the way, it is noted that you can only listen to the downloads within their apps instead of other music streaming apps or players.

If you don't have a Spotify Premium account, you can use AudFree Spotify Music Converter to download and listen to Spotify music without Premium.

In Conclusion

The overall performance of Spotify vs iHeartRadio will leave you with a tough decision. Which is better? Now, let's check the difference between Spotify and iHeartRadio in the comparison table below.

iHeartRadio Spotify
Launch Date 2008 2008
Audio Quality AAC, 128 kbps OGG Vorbis,
On Web Player: 256Kbps (Premium Plan), 128Kbps (Free Plan)
On App: Up to 320Kbps (Premium Plan), 160Kbps (Free Plan)
Price Free;
Plus: $4.99/month;
All Access: $9.99/month;
Family: $14.99/month, up to 6 accounts
Individual: $10.99/month, one account;
Duo: $14.99/month, two accounts;
Family: $16.99/month, up to 6 accounts;
Student: $5.99/month, one account
Music Library Over 20 million tracks 100 million songs and 5 million podcasts, audiobooks
Compatibility iOS, Android, web, desktop iOS, Android, web, desktop, smart speakers, etc.
Availability 5 countries 178 countries

If you're only looking for radio listening with no ads, iHeartRadio is the obvious choice. However, if you're willing to pay for music streaming, it gets tricky. If you want to choose from a massive music catalog, a variety of audio quality, and a seamless user experience, then the decision would be easier given the Spotify's excellent features.

Charles Davis

Charles Davis

Chief Editor

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Charles Davis is the chief-editor of AudFree Company, who writes a variety of tech articles and music reviews, such as hot software releases and Spotify music tips.

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