Music and video streaming services that let you download for offline use
More and more music and video streaming services are embracing offline playback, allowing you to download over your home broadband plan and save on mobile data usage.
Video and music streaming services are currently in high demand, but they’re reliant on active internet connections in order to stream content.
Thankfully, a feature that’s becoming increasingly common with streaming services is the ability to download music, TV shows or movies over your home broadband connection to watch or listen to later without needing a live broadband connection during playback.
Offline viewing benefits
Mobile data plans are often limited in comparison to fixed line, fixed wireless, and satellite broadband quotas.
Outside of unmetered content on mobile networks, which occurs when a carrier doesn’t charge data for using specific services, another way to watch your favourite content or listen to your preferred tunes is by first downloading the content on a home connection before heading out.
This is handy whether you’re stepping onto a plane where online streaming is impossible, dealing with potentially patchy mobile data spots in certain areas, or simply preserving your mobile data allowance.
Music streaming services with offline playback
There’s a range of music streaming services in Australia that support offline playback.
The only other proviso is that you have to connect to the internet at least once every 30 days to preserve your offline music.
Google Play Music
If you’re a Google Play Music subscriber, you also receive a subscription to video/music streaming service YouTube Red, and vice versa.
Bear in mind, there’s crossover between music and video playback for YouTube Red.
You can have your pick of 38-million tracks for offline playback with a Microsoft’s Groove Music Pass monthly subscription and can store music for offline listening on up to five devices.
If you like to have the option of high-fidelity audio, Tidal also offers offline playback on up to three different offline devices, all of which can be listened to simultaneously offline.
Radio-like streaming service Pandora also supports offline playback, but requires a Pandora Plus Subscription.
There are some strict rules about compatible devices, but technically on as many supported devices as you like, so long as you’re only using one at a time.
For new and emerging music fans and a library of 135+ million tracks, SoundCloud Go also offers offline playback, with the option to set an offline storage limit on up to three devices (not including desktop usage).
Video streaming services with offline playback
Note that not all TV series and movies support offline playback on Netflix, and your streaming plan will determine whether you can download videos on one (Basic plan), two (Standard plan) or four (Premium plan) devices.
Amazon Prime Video
Amazon Prime Video launched in Australia late in 2016, and it allows for offline viewing on up to two compatible iOS, Android or Amazon Fire devices.
A YouTube Red subscription gives you access to some special YouTube content, gets rid of ads on the service, allows you to continue playing the audio of a video in the background on your phone or tablet, and also gives you the option to download content for later viewing.
On top of this, YouTube Red subscribers also have access to Google Play music (and vice versa).
As offline streaming is predominantly targeted at smartphones and tablets, one of the biggest limitations for downloading content for offline streaming is storage capacity.
Also, a streaming service may restrict how many songs/videos you can download and how long you can keep them once you have completed your download.
That may seem like a lot to take into account for offline playback, but you can save a lot of mobile data and prepare media for times of no connectivity by using an audio or video service that supports this feature and downloading over your home wi-fi network.
More and more Aussies are jumping on board video streaming services all the time. Check out how much data streaming movies, TV and other video uses to get a rough idea of what to expect.