Songa, the music streaming service backed by Safaricom, has been around for a while now. Half a year, to be exact. Like most new products and services, it has had its fair number of issues. From a buggy Android-only app to the one million prompts that users would get upon expiry of the 14-day trial period nagging them to subscribe to the service.
Then there’s been the elephant in the room: the pricing.
Sure, there are those of us who are used to streaming our music, like yours truly, but this is still a foreign concept to a good number of Kenyans. So, music streaming being a new concept to many of our fellow countrymen, imagine asking them to part with Kshs 25, 150 or 500 daily, weekly or monthly, respectively? That is sure to be hard. In fact, that’s the conversation we were having recently on 24Bit (look out for that conversation soon).
This is why it’s exciting to learn that Songa by Safaricom has introduced a new subscription plan in addition to the existing Kshs 25 per day plan. Going forward, users can choose between paying Kshs 25 daily, as has been the case, or, even better, just Kshs 5 per day. Yes, that’s right, you can stream your music for as long as you want for just 5 bob every day.
Assuming that one subscribes to Songa by Safaricom for 5 bob every day for a 30-day period, that translates to just Kshs 150, a far cry from the Kshs 500 (or thereabout, $4.99) that both Apple Music and Deezer, the other notable music streaming services available in the country, charge per month. It’s even still cheaper than the Kshs 250 (or thereabout, $2.49) that those who opt in to Apple Music’s university student plan, which is available to university students in Kenya, pay per month. Of course, an argument can be made about the other service’s superior feature set and larger music catalog when compared to what Songa offers.
There is a catch, though.
The Kshs 5 per day subscription plan (Songa Gold) allows subscribers to only listen to local and continental (African) tunes as well as selected international ones. The Kshs 25 per day plan (Songa Premium) offers full access to Songa’s catalog of over 2 million songs. Subscription to either tier allows a user unlimited song downloads for listening when one is offline.
There are some interesting claims being made on the Songa app’s welcome page. Does “data free streaming” mean what I think it means? Because that will be a big thing. A game changer. (Tip: don’t get your hopes high).
Will the introduction of a subscription plan that is 20% cheaper get you to finally give Songa by Safaricom a try?