Best streaming music apps for iPhone

Picking a music streaming app on your iPhone isn't an easy job, and there isn't a one size fits all option.

Since most music streaming apps all require a paid subscription, it makes the choice even more stressful. What music streaming service you ultimately choose depends on what your musical tastes are, whether you prefer radio style streaming or on-demand, and lots of other factors. While we can't tell you what service is best for you, we can help you narrow down your choices. These are currently the music streaming services that we think offer a superior listening experience on the iPhone!

1. Pandora

Best streaming music apps for iPhone: Songza, Spotify, Rdio, and more!

Radio style listening with great curation

I keep Pandora around because I can type in an artist, hit play, and be done. If I thumbs down a track, Pandora is the best at weeding out artists from that playlist. I wish there weren't as many repeats but I'll deal with them for the expert curation Pandora offers. Pandora is completely free with ads or you can opt for a premium subscription of $4.99 per month or a little over $40 per year to eliminate ads.

2. Rdio

Best streaming music apps for iPhone

Over 30 million songs, beautifully packaged, on demand

Rdio has one of the most beautiful interfaces you'll find when it comes to music streaming apps. Rdio features over 32 million songs, offline playback options, lots of ways to discover new music and edit stations, and more. Rdio may not have all the exclusive content Spotify has, but if you don't care about that, Rdio still offers up a better overall experience. You can Rdio for free as a radio service, premium starts at $9.99 a month and offers unlimited listening and zero ads.

3. Spotify

Best streaming music apps for iPhone

For exclusive content, reliability, and decent free options

Spotify has more exclusive deals with different music artists than any other service around. It also offers over 30 million songs, offline playback options, and more. It may not be as pretty but Spotify typically has new music before any other service. When it comes to free, Spotify offers a little more flexibility and lets you play albums, artists, and playlists on shuffle on demand, something Rdio and others don't. Spotify premium subscriptions currently run $9.99 per month.

4. Songza

Best streaming music apps for iPhone: Songza

For excellent party playlists, from every decade

Songza is the app I turn to whenever we have a large group of people to entertain. It's the only app I've found that lets me sort by genres such as decades and specific subsets of music. Not to mention the concierge service is great and offers up great playlists in just a few taps. You can enjoy Songza free with zero listening limits.

5. SoundCloud

Best streaming music apps for iPhone

For music discovery with a community behind it

SoundCloud is completely free for listeners. You can find amazing remixes by indie artists, DJs, and regular people as well as live and unheard tracks by popular artists. It's more than just an on-demand streaming service, it's an entire music community. I've found more great indie artists on SoundCloud in the past year than I have with any other service. What you'll find is pretty much limitless, especially if you're into electronic.

6. Slacker

Best streaming music apps for iPhone

Sports, comedy, and indie artists aplenty

Slacker may boast less tracks than its competition but it does radio stations great. From ESPN to comedy, you'll find it on Slacker. The UI has also received quite the overhaul in the past year, making it a much more pleasant experience this time around. Premium ad free subscriptions start at only $3.99 too, making it a lot more affordable than some of the other options.

7. iTunes Radio

Best streaming music apps for iPhone

For built-in radio style streaming at zero cost

iTunes Radio is built right into the Music app of your iPhone and iPad. You can create your own stations, listen to ones iTunes has already curated, and even mix artists to create unique blends. If you subscribe to iTunes Match, you'll hear no ads. If you don't, iTunes Radio is still free, just ad supported. If your streaming needs are basic, it gets the job done.

  • Free - Built into the iOS Music app

8. Beats Music

Best streaming music apps for iPhone

For excellent playlist curation

Out of all the streaming music services available, Beats Music does the best job of playlist curation. New ones are featured and added constantly and there's literally something for everyone. There is no free tier and paid subscriptions start at $10 a month or $100 a year. With offline playback, and unique playback options such as the sentence, there's a lot to like about Beats, particularly when it comes to music discovery.

9. Amazon Music

Best streaming music apps for iPhone: Beats Music

If you have Amazon Prime, it's free

Amazon Music still needs some work, but if you're a Prime member, it's 100% free to use. That includes listening to anything in Amazon's collection of over a million songs. You can also save them for offline playback. Sure, it's much smaller than some of the other options, but again, if you have Prime, it's free and worth checking out. The app itself isn't bad either.

10. TuneIn Radio Pro

Best streaming music apps for iPhone: Songza, Spotify, Rdio, and more!

Record live radio, enjoy hundreds of thousands of stations

TuneIn Radio Pro does one thing exceptionally well, and that's live radio. Record anything you hear and play it back later. You can find everything from sports, news, talk shows, and music. My favorite feature of TuneIn is that it ties into online stations too. I use it regularly as a way to play Digitally Imported radio through my Sonos system. If you're looking for obscure radio stations, you're almost sure to find them on TuneIn.

11. Rhapsody

Best streaming music apps for iPhone

For a great value and decent experience

Rhapsody has come a long way in the past year. It offers great sound quality, unlimited skips, offline playback, and lots more. I'm also a fan of the playlist views which are less cluttered than others. It's a great combination of music and radio, so those that find themselves somewhere in the middle will enjoy what Rhapsody has to offer. Rhapsody subscriptions currently start at $4.99 per month.

12. Google Play Music

Best streaming music apps for iPhone: Rdio

Combine streaming and your real library in one app

Google Play Music not only offers millions of on-demand songs at your fingertips, it lets you add up to 50,000 of your own songs to the service. If you're looking to save some storage and none of your music was purchased from iTunes, Google Play Music is your best bet. For an all-access pass, you'll pay $9.99 per month, but can start off with a free trial to test the service.

13. Deezer

Best streaming music apps for iPhone

If you're outside the US

I'm giving Deezer an honorable mention for my international friends. I've heard great things about it but can't yet fully use it on iPhone in the States. Those of you that have Sonos may have access to it now. But if you live outside of the United States, the full version may already be available to you.

14. Your picks?

Best streaming music apps for iPhone

If you depend on your iPhone as your daily driver for streaming music, what service do you use and why? Be sure to let me know in the comments!