Amazon 'changes Earth forever' with HD music streaming service

Amazon 'changes Earth forever' with HD music streaming service

Amazon 'changes Earth forever' with HD music streaming service

Don't worry, this option isn't actually called Amazon Music Unlimited Premium, but rather Amazon Music HD, granting unlimited, ad-free access to "more than" 50 million songs in High Definition and "millions" of songs in Ultra High Definition.

Amazon Music HD is now being rolled out in the US, UK, Germany, and Japan, and it'll cost $12.99 / £12.99 for Prime members, and $14.99 / £14.99 for everyone else - cheaper than Tidal's lossless streaming tier, which costs $19.99 / £19.99.

The service, which costs £5 more than a standard Amazon subscription, will also offer some albums in "Ultra HD", which promises to be better-than-CD quality.

Amazon Music HD is compatible with PC, Mac, Android, iOS, select Amazon Echo devices, Fire TV, and Fire Tablets.

"Earth will be changed forever when Amazon introduces high quality streaming to the masses", according to Neil Young, who's quoted in Amazon's press release about the service, and finally killed off his own high-quality Pono player in 2017.

It will cost existing Amazon Prime members $12.99 (US) / £12.99 (UK) a month and non-Prime members $14.99 / $14.99 a month.

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Some of the additional money generated by the new service will go to artists and rights-holders, but Amazon could not discuss the terms of its new licensing deals.

The big question, according to Chris Cooke of Complete Music Update, is whether "Amazon can take what has traditionally been a niche product and make it more mainstream".

"As we usher in a new listening experience for our customers and the industry, we're combining the convenience of streaming with all of the emotion, power, clarity and nuance of the original recordings", Amazon Music VP Steve Boom said in a statement.

"This will be the biggest thing to happen in music since the introduction of digital audio 40 years ago", he added.

TIDAL's "Masters" range is made possible by its partnership with digital hi-def music company MQA. A family license is $19.99, compared to $29.99 for Tidal Family HiFi, while Spotify and Apple Music don't have a lossless service tier yet.

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