Amazon has announced that their higher-quality streaming music service, Amazon Music HD, is now available for free for all standard Amazon Music Unlimited subscribers. The premium music service used to cost an extra $5 a month over Amazon’s standard music subscription prices but now it’s included at no additional charge. However, receiving the better audio quality isn’t automatic, so you do need to manually upgrade to it.
Competition is a great thing. Earlier today, Apple announced that they will begin offering Apple Music subscribers higher music quality at no additional charge starting next month. Within minutes of Apple’s announcement, Amazon announced that they’ll be doing the same starting immediately. Individual plans of Amazon Music Unlimited, both at the Prime member rate of $7.99/month and the regular rate of $9.99/month, qualify for the free upgrade, as does the $14.99/month family plan. I’ve seen reports that the $0.99/month Prime Studen plan and the $3.99/month Echo-only plan might not be eligible for the upgrade, but I’m unable to confirm it.
To upgrade to the higher-quality audio streams, you must visit Amazon’s music subscription page and click the “Upgrade Now” button at the top. Amazon Music HD was originally only supported on the 2nd-gen Fire TV Cube but it became available on the Fire TV Stick 4K and the 3rd-gen Fire TV Stick late last year. I’m not sure if it has come to other Fire TV models since then. It’s also available through 2nd-gen Echo devices and later.