When Jay-Z launched TIDAL back in 2015, it was advertised as a brand-new, cutting-edge music streaming platform designed to deliver higher-quality sonics and better financial opportunities for artists. However, at a price tag much steeper than it’s counterparts at Apple Music and Spotify, the platform never *really* became what it was supposed to be.Earlier in 2021, Hov finalized a deal to sell his majority stake in TIDAL to Square owner and Twitter founder, Jack Dorsey, and made a rare appearance on social media to explain the sale.

“I said from the beginning that TIDAL was about more than just streaming music, and six years later, it has remained a platform that supports artists at every point in their careers. Artists deserve better tools to assist them in their creative journey,” he tweeted. “Jack is one of the greatest minds of our times, and our many discussions about TIDAL’s endless possibilities have made me even more inspired about its future. This shared vision makes me even more excited to join the Square board. This partnership will be a game-changer for many. I look forward to all this new chapter has to offer!”  

That was back in March. Now, more than eight months later, we are beginning to see the changes Dorsey brought to the TIDAL table.

In an Instagram post this morning TIDAL announced that they are introducing a free tier, as well as direct artist payouts and fan-centered royalties.

According to TIDAL, the new, free tier will allow subscribers access to over 80 million songs, and will feature the platform’s standard sound quality and limited ad interruptions. TIDAL HiFi, the next tier up from the free tier, is equipped with Hi-Fi sound quality, and at $9.99/month, is ad-free and comes with unlimited skips. HiFi Plus, TIDAL’s highest, and most expensive tier, costs $19.99/month, uses innovative audio formats, and provides artist payment reports, fan-centered royalties and direct artist payouts.

Fan-centered royalties and direct artist payouts are designed to funnel subscriptions costs directly from fans to artists, and according to TIDAL’s explanation, “artists will see a significantly higher per-play-rate than the standard rate of other streaming services,” as well as a “new activity feed [that] will show fans exactly where their money goes.”

 

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Have you already been rocking with TIDAL? Will you be taking advantage of its new, free tier? Let us know down in the comments.