Don't pay for Tidal with the App Store

Don't ask me why it's this way, but if you're paying for Tidal with your iTunes Account, you're spending too much money. No, really, you are. I promise. You'll save 30% on your subscription by paying for it by other means.

If you sign up for Tidal on the web or in, say, the Android app then you'll see the price of $19.99 for the HiFi subscription plan. Let's face it, if you're using Tidal at all, this is probably why. But, if you should happen to sign up using your iPhone or iPad, then that price goes up.

In the UK it costs £25.99 a month through iTunes. £6 more. I assume the same can be said of U.S.-based customers. It's the easiest way to subscribe and enjoy Tidal, but it's literally throwing your money down the toilet.

When you sign up, you get the first 30 days free anyway, so you have time to figure it out. Tidal doesn't even hide the fact you can pay less, happily telling you on its website that if you pay with a credit card or PayPal you'll save money.

Here's how you make the switch.

  1. Log in to your Tidal account on the Tidal website.
  2. Select payment from the menu on the right side of the screen. You'll see the image above.
  3. Select the new payment option and add your details.

You'll have to cancel your current subscription in iTunes yourself; otherwise, you can and probably will be charged twice. If you need an assist on that, hit the link below for our full guide.

How to cancel an App Store subscription

Assuming you've done this before any Apple-made payments are taken, you won't have to worry and you'll only be paying the proper rate of $19.99.

Download Tidal at the App Store (opens in new tab)

Richard Devine

Editor at iMore, part time racing driver, full time British guy. Follow him on Twitter and Google+

6 Comments
  • I’ve seen this in other cases as well. I’m guessing it’s because Apple takes a cut when purchasing through the Apple Store. So in order for the companies to get the full $19.99, they need to charge that extra. The music streaming service Deezer is the same way.
  • Apple's 30% cut in action, basically. It's the same for many other media streaming/subscription services.
  • Yeah, I think GoogleMusic does it too. And iirc Apple that's why Apple doesn't allow you to subscribe for AppleMusic on Android.
  • Always check to see if the service offers renewals or subscriptions through their website first. Never subscribe via the app store if its avoidable.
  • "Don't ask me why it's this way, but if you're paying for Tidal with your iTunes Account, you're spending too much money. No, really, you are. I promise. You'll save 30% on your subscription by paying for it by other means" As others have said, it's Apple being somewhat anticompetitive and taking a 30% cut of subscriptions made via the App Store. They should have ended this practice as soon as they launched the Apple Music subscription.
  • This was in the news a while ago with Spotify and Amazon. Apple doesn't allow app store apps to ask for credit card info. Because they don't want people using the app store to scam people. Amazon used to get around it by having a link to sign up through a web viewer, but Apple nixed that option as well. Basically the idea is if you're finding the service through Apple's platform and infrastructure they feel (rightly or wrongly) they deserve a cut. Of course anyone doing a subscription service doesn't want to give away 30% so it's become popular for companies particularly those who compete with Apple (like Spotify and Tidal) to tack on an extra 30%. I think Amazon just figures you can figure out how to open Safari and register on their site.