T-Mobile expands its free streaming music plans

When you’re the underdog, why not make your own rules? T-Mobile announced that it will continue support for its special “Music Freedom” initiative, which exempts many streaming music apps from counting toward a subscriber’s data cap. Starting today, the carrier has added six streaming music services to the stable of apps spared from LTE data overage fees: Rdio, Songza, Grooveshark, AccuRadio, Black Planet, and Radio Paradise. 

The new apps will join Spotify, iHeartRadio, iTunesRadio, Pandora, Rhapsody, Samsung Milk, and Slacker on the carrier’s all-you-can-hear data buffet. T-Mobile introduced the plan earlier this year at one of its “Uncarrier” events.

According to T-Mobile, subscribers are now streaming 5 million more songs a day compared to numbers prior to the Music Freedom plan’s launch. Some critics have rightfully raised concerns that giving one form of data a special status—in this case, making streaming music data free—sets a dangerous precedent that flies in the face of net neutrality, but for now, T-Mobile subscribers aren’t complaining. The carrier stated that it plans to add Google Play Music later this year, but don’t expect to see Apple-owned Beats, cozy with AT&T from the start, showing up any time soon.

Illustration by Jason Reed

Taylor Hatmaker

Taylor Hatmaker

Taylor Hatmaker has reported on the tech industry for nearly a decade, covering privacy and government. Most recently, she was the Debug editor of the Daily Dot. Prior to that, she was a staff writer and deputy editor at ReadWrite, a tech and business reporter for Yahoo News, and the senior editor of Tecca. Her editorial interests include censorship, digital activism, LGBTQ issues, and futurist consumer tech.