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How to download Spotify

how to download spotify
(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

When you want to listen to music, Spotify's a great choice, whether you're taking advantage of the free offering or paying up for a subscription. But are you sure that you've downloaded every version of Spotify that you need?

Spotify is available as a mobile app, of course, so that your favorite music and podcasts follow you wherever you go. But there's also version of Spotify that you can download for your desktop so that the music doesn't have to stop when you're back at home.

Here's a quick guide to how you can download Spotify for iPhone, Android or any desktop platform you happen to be using. We'll also help you discover whether you need the premium subscription or whether free Spotify delivers enough for you.

Where to download Spotify

Chances are, you'll want Spotify on your smartphone, as having the app installed on mobile devices means that you can stream music from anywhere. (Just make sure you've got an unlimited data plan or that you're managing your allotment of data in your cell phone plan wisely.) To find Spotify for iPhone or Android, just head to the appropriate mobile app store.

But what if you're using a laptop or PC? You can alway use the browser-based version of Spotify, but downloading an app built for that platform may deliver a smoother experience. Spotify has a downloads page where you'll find versions of the music streaming app for macOS, (including OS X 10.5), Windows, Linux and Chromebook.

What you can do with Spotify

Spotify lets you stream music from a library of more than 40 million songs. In recent years, Spotify has also built out its podcast library and it offers audiobooks as well.

If you don't mind ads, you can use the free version of Spotify, provided you have an online connection. If you want to access Spotify when you're offline — in other words, if you want to download your playlists — you'll need to pay a $9.99 per month subscription.

There are other reasons to subscribe to Spotify Premium. Artists can now hold back new releases for two weeks from the free tier. Premium subscribers also enjoy unlimited skips.

Spotify has added lyrics to both the mobile and desktop versions of its app, thanks to the Musicxmatch service. And Spotify is continually looking for way to challenge rival streaming music services like Apple Music, which is also available for $9.99 per month.