Toss up: internet subscription music services
Versatile ... Rdio on different platforms.
Subscription music services put massive music libraries at your fingertips, letting you listen to millions of tracks streamed from the internet - from new releases to the classics.
Music lovers unacquainted with such freedom will feel like kids in a candy store but keep an eye on your internet usage.
Thankfully, some services let you save songs on your computer and mobile devices, so you're not constantly chewing through your monthly internet allowance.
Spotify is the global music subscription heavyweight. An Australian launch is expected soon with similar pricing to Rdio but for now you can sign up to Spotify only by using a virtual private network to pretend you're in the US.
Rdio launched in Australia several months ago. Spotify has a slightly larger music library but Rdio's recommendation features make it easier to discover new music.
Rdio and Spotify both offer Windows and Mac desktop software, plus Rdio also runs in a browser, which is handy if you swap computers often during the day.
The Rdio pro service adds mobile support for iOS, Android, BlackBerry and Windows Phone 7 devices, along with the Sonos multi-room audio system. Spotify Premium supports all those plus Symbian and Palm Pre devices. Unfortunately, we're still waiting on a dedicated iPad app (although you can use the iPhone app) and it doesn't support Apple's AirPlay for streaming music around your home.
Both let you cache music on your smartphone for offline listening but only Spotify lets you cache music on a computer as well, which could be the deal-breaker if you spend a lot of time on the road and can't spare the mobile bandwidth.
iGadget owners will probably lean towards Rdio but little separates them. Both offer free trials, so you can sample them to see which offers more of the music you like. Thankfully, there's no lock-in, so you can easily switch to another service if something better comes along.
$8.90 a month basic, $12.90 p/m pro
Unlimited/ Premium $TBA a month