Tidal Simplifies Subscription Options, Says Goodbye to Free Tier

Tidal changing subscription tiers
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Tidal changing subscription tiers
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Photo Credit: Tidal

Tidal is dropping its dual-tier subscription offering and rolling its hi-res audio offering into its $10.99/monthly plan. As part of the changes, the free tier is being sunset as well.

Starting April 10 in the United States, Tidal will combine HiFi and HiFi Plus tiers into a single subscription called ‘Tidal.’ The new subscription will cost $10.99/month just like the less expensive HiFi plan—likely because Tidal found it tough to compete with Apple Music and Amazon’s hi-res offerings.

The new simplified subscription offering will feature high-res FLACs, Dolby Atmos mixes, and Tidal MQA tracks that were previously only available for HiFi Plus subscribers. That means any subscribers to the current HiFi Plus plan will see a reduction in their subscription cost when the switch happens.

Meanwhile, the HiFi Plus and HiFi Family Plans are also being consolidated into one Tidal Family subscription available for $16.99/monthly. For DJs who have used the Tidal DJ extension, there are some important considerations.

Anyone who has used Tidal’s DJ integration feature within the last 90 days will be charged an extra $9 a month unless they adjust the subscription to remove it.

The extra DJ integration brings the total subscription price back up to $19.99/monthly—the same price as the current HiFi Plus offering. Student plans are still available at the discounted rate of $4.99/monthly, but the military/first-responder discount is going away.

“Starting April 10, 2024 users who were on the Tidal Free tier will need to switch to a paid Tidal subscription to continue enjoying Tidal’s services,” Tidal says.

The new pricing tier should help Tidal better compete with Apple Music and Amazon, while still offering something Spotify lacks. Spotify announced its HiFi service well over three years ago and it is no where to be seen. The rumored Spotify Supremium subscription still hasn’t materialized—though we may see progress on that this year.