Amazon 'changes Earth forever' with HD music streaming service

Carla Harmon
September 17, 2019

Amazon's press announcement quoted longtime hi-res music supporter and rock icon Neil Young as saying, "Earth will be changed forever when Amazon introduces high quality streaming to the masses". If you're already a subscriber to Amazon Music Unlimited, you can upgrade to Amazon Music HD for an extra $5 per month.

Amazon today rolled out Amazon Music HD, a new tier of its music streaming service that is claimed to offer millions of songs in Ultra High Definition quality.

For Amazon's new premium-tier music service, the band have take on "I'm Your Puppet" - written Dan Penn and Spooner Oldham and made famous by James & Bobby Purify - and the original version of "Now That You're Gone", which appeared on this year's Help Us Stranger.

In the U.S., Amazon Music HD will cost $13 per month for Prime members and $15 per month for Amazon customers.

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

"It's a pretty big deal that one of the big three global streaming services is doing this", Amazon's Vice President of Music Steve Boom said.

"But what's been missing along the way is the focus on quality", he said. "So it felt really right to us that, actually, there is a market segment out there for people who do want to hear high-quality sound".

Amazon says that Music HD will play the highest quality audio supported by the device it's being streamed on and network conditions. It is compatible with a variety of devices, including desktop, mobile (iOS & Android), select Echo devices, Fire TV, and Fire Tablets.

More specifically, Amazon says that Music HD offers 50 million lossless songs which have 16 bit depth and a 44.1kHz sample rate, which is equal to CD quality.

The industry standard for the alternative system of hi-res audio is superior to CD quality.

Speaking of which, it's worth quickly scanning over Amazon's five-pronged pricing strategy in music streaming, which offers varying tiers - from cost free to $14.99-per-month for individuals.

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