How to listen to free music on your Amazon Echo speaker

Listen to music on your Alexa speaker without paying

If you’re the proud owner of an Amazon Echo – or any smart speaker with Alexa built-in – it’s possible to enjoy hours of music for free. These days, a music subscription seems to be another life tax, just like fuel, bills and, of course, Netflix.

But it’s not all bad news. Amazon has an ad-supported plan for Amazon Music and Spotify has also loosened restrictions since Echo first became popular, meaning there are a number of ways for Alexa-enabled devices to stream music without you having to pay.

There are of course restrictions with the free plans, but, if you’re looking to save the monthly outlay for an Apple Music or Spotify subscription, and you don’t want to pay for Amazon Music Unlimited access, this guide delivers all the ways you can listen to music on your Alexa speaker for free. Let’s go through the steps and streaming platforms you can utilize.

Use Spotify Free

In the past, Spotify on Alexa used to be limited to the paid-for subscription plan, but thankfully, it is now possible for the users of Spotify Free to also use their voice to summon music on an Alexa speaker. There are limitations, however.

You can only choose music from playlists, so you can’t just pick and choose the music you want to hear on a whim. You can however choose your own created playlists – or ones like Discover Weekly, which are personalized to your tastes. Spotify also has tonnes of curated playlists, too.

Spotify Free users can play their favorite music on even more smart speakers; not only Amazon Echo speakers, but Sonos speakers like the Era 100 and Beam – as well as Bose smart speakers.

Amazon Music Free on Alexa

Try Amazon Music for free

Previously, there was no automatic provision for music built into the Echo or Alexa, and you could only access Music Prime if you were an Amazon Prime subscriber. These days however, Amazon has a free tier of its music streaming service that’s ad-supported and available for any Alexa-enabled device.

Amazon Music Free gives users access to a selection of top playlists and stations with no fee. It’s naturally more limited, since there’s no subscription required, so you don’t get HD or Dolby Atmos spatial audio tracks, and you can’t shuffle or play any artist, album or playlist like you can with Music Prime and Music Unlimited. If you were to pay for Music Unlimited, you get those HD and Dolby Atmos tracks, as well as access to more than 100 million songs.

You can access the free music based on songs, artists, eras or genres, saying things like, “Alexa, play the [artist/song/etc.] station.” Alternatively, you can choose one of the many preset playlists, including Fuego Latino, Country Heat and more.

If you want to try out a fully paid Amazon Music Unlimited subscription, you can do that, too. Simply take out a 30-day Amazon Music Unlimited trial, which you can cancel at any time. It’s a great way to try before you buy.

TuneIn on Alexa

Access free radio with TuneIn

If you’re not interested in the free tier of Amazon Music, you can always hit up the radio.

While Google obviously has YouTube to call on, there’s no option for that on your Alexa speaker – unless, of course, you’re trying to watch YouTube on the Echo Show. But there is the TuneIn radio skill, which will give you access to pretty much any radio station on demand.

Just say, “Alexa, play [radio station]” to get started. It should work automatically but say “Alexa, enable TuneIn skill,” if not.

Amazon Echo speaker

Amazon Echo devices are all compatible with Bluetooth, so you can hook them up as speakers for your devices. That means you can play any music source you like on your Amazon Echo – if you pair the two first.

It’s a bit of a faff, but Alexa will remember devices, so you can just say, “Alexa, pair my device,” at any point to quickly get the two hooked up. We have a separate feature on using Echo speakers as a Bluetooth speaker so head here if you want to learn more about that.

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