Will Tidal Make Waves Or Is It About Jay-Z And Co Getting Richer?

By : Sam Ridgway |


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This month Jay Z and a few other big timers in the music industry launched their very own music streaming platform, Tidal.

The streaming service will cost a lot more than Spotify, and with no free service, artists will make more each time their music is played.

Currently the world’s leading music streaming platform, Spotify, provides music at a compressed rate of 320kbps – Tidal will provide their music at lossless quality of 1,411 kbps.

So, what makes Tidal “different”? The Hi-Fi package provides users with:

– Lossless High Fidelity Audio
– High Definition Music Videos
– Exclusive content

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Quite a big difference in numbers, but what does this all mean?

Every time you compress a music file into MP3 or OGG (Spotify’s preferred file format) you shave off some, or a lot, of detail in order to achieve a smaller file size. Flac files which are used by Tidal are compressed in a different way so when you press play they can be decompressed to their original quality so there is no loss in fidelity. Hence the term lossless.

All about the money?

Tidal was launched with grand ambitions ‘to change the way people experience music’

There has been a mixed reaction by the general public. Some think this is a genuine innovation that will greatly improve their listening experience;

But a good number of people believe Tidal is just another gimmick to make rich artists even richer.

Spotify’s current freemium service has been criticised by those in the music industry, who believe it dilutes the higher royalties they receive from paid subscribers. However, It’s worth noting that whilst some artists will benefit greatly from the increased returns of Tidal there are also song writers and producers to bare in mind. They only receive a very small percentage of revenue and are currently feeling the squeeze, so any revenue increase is likely to benefit them to. Furthermore, not every artist is a millionaire global superstar, using Tidal would be an opportunity for lesser known/independent artists to further support and promote themselves.

Yet, is pricing out a generation of fans really the best solution? Music has a huge impact in the lives of every teenager, and currently Spotify offers a relatively affordable premium service, and a freemium service for those who can’t afford that. It offers an alternative to young fans to listen to music legitimately without resorting to piracy.

Will you be able to tell the difference? And is it worth £234 a year? Tidal premium costs £9.99 a month (the exact same as Spotify) however, Tidal Hi-Fi costs £19.49 a month.

So can you tell the difference? Take the test and let us know your opinion. http://test.tidalhifi.com/