Skip to main content

Songza goes premium with ad-free subscription option

If you've had enough ads and want more skips, Club Songza will cost you 99 cents per week. But the free service is still plenty good.
Club Songza will cost you 99 cents per week, but you can still listen for free if you prefer.
Music-streaming service Songza has added a premium option for listeners who want it.
Dubbed Club Songza, it offers ad-free listening and twice as many song-skips (12 instead of 6) for 99 cents per week.
Wait a second -- ads? What ads? I've never heard so much as a single commercial while listening to Songza on my iPhone or PC. However, I did notice that the app now forces you to "interact" with an onscreen ad (usually by typing in a word) before you can start listening, which is kind of a hassle.
On the other hand, with that done, you're good for a full 24 hours of uninterrupted play. That's still pretty generous, especially compared with the likes of Pandora and Slacker, which play a commercial after every handful of songs.
But if you don't like that ad requirement and do like to skip more often, Club Songza gives you the option. It's interesting that the company is pitching it with a weekly (rather than monthly or annual) rate -- "cheaper than a soda!", according to the e-mail I received. That's true, but it also works out to $4 monthly, same as what you'd pay for Pandora One or Slacker Radio Plus. (Actually, it's a little more: 99 cents per week equals $51.48 per year, versus $3.99 per month, which totals $47.88 per year.)
For the moment, Club Songza doesn't seem like much of a value, but the aforementioned e-mail notes that your subscription includes "an ad-free experience with no visual ads and no commercial interruptions." Translation: commercial interruptions are probably coming for listeners who don't subscribe.

I'm on record as calling Songza the single best music-streaming app, and it's still my go-to choice when I want to discover new artists and play songs based on what I'm doing. I suppose the free-music gravy train had to pull into the station sometime, but we'll have to see if ads start spoiling the experience. For now, I don't anticipate joining the Club, mostly because I'm cheap. Your thoughts?

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Best tech gifts under $100 for Dad

Roku's speedy streamer is the best box yetThe good:The Roku 3's excellent new interface and faster processor makes it feel quicker and more responsive than any other streaming box. More than 750 channels are supported, including Netflix, Amazon Instant, HBO Go, Hulu Plus, Pandora, MLB.TV, Amazon Cloud Player, and Vudu. It also has cross-platform search that scours several major TV and movie services to find content. And Roku's nifty new remote has a built-in headphone jack that lets you listen without disturbing others. The bad:There's still no official YouTube channel. Some services have an outdated interface on Roku compared to other streamers. The Apple TV still works better within the Apple ecosystem. And the Roku 3 isn't a great option if you're mostly looking to stream your personal digital media collection. The bottom line:The Roku 3 is the best streaming-video box yet, with tons of content sources, lightning-fast performance, and an innovative remote wit…

'Star Trek II' producer talks Ceti Eel, J.J. Abrams, and more (Q&A)

Robert Sallin, producer of "Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan," shares his experience working on the film, looks at the future of "Trek," and dishes on whether that was Ricardo Montalban's real chest.

The release of "Star Trek Into Darkness" has not only spurred interest in the "Trek" world in general, but especially in its film daddy, the original Khan-as-villain movie "Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan." While the new film takes quite a few detours, it is full of homages to the earlier work. Let's look back to 1982. "Star Trek: The Motion Picture" had been released in 1979 and faced a poor critical reception. Paramount, the film's studio, was gun-shy after the movie nearly doubled its original budget, ending up with a $46 million price tag. Nonetheless, plans for a second movie plodded along. It's 30, 40 years later and we have new audiences. You can't keep dwelling on the old guys and the old things. It has…

Canon videos show off 70D's dual-pixel autofocus technology

It remains to be seen how well it works in the real world, but the new dual-pixel autofocus technology shows promise in Canon's promotional video about its latest SLR.


Canon wants to show off what its new EOS 70D camera can do when it comes to one persistent shortcoming in the digital photography revolution: autofocus. It's posted two videos -- a demonstration video called Handmade and a behind-the-scenes explanatory video about it -- designed to show what the new digital SLR can accomplish with its new Dual Pixel CMOS AF (DPA) technology. Check below to watch the videos. No doubt the autofocus technology won't work as smoothly in the real world as it does in these promotional videos with bright lighting, carefully arranged sets, and plenty of chances to shoot another take if things don't go right at first. But they're worth watching to at least get a flavor of what's possible and to see a reasonably broad selection of the 103 Canon lenses the company says DPA …