Its been a little over a month since I signed up for the free trial on Tidal powered by MTN. Its also a couple of days after my trial expired and yes, I renewed my monthly subscription but also made a few observations that I felt I should share for those already using the platform and those hesitant to get into streaming.
Before I begin my review, I should state that I have used Spotify, Deezer and now Tidal. So, I make comparisons based on the other streaming services I have used. So here is my Tidal experience over my first month.
The Pros and Cons of MTN Tidal
Music variety: Almost all the kind of music I like to listen to, I found on Tidal. There is a wealth of Ugandan music as well, and this database keeps growing.
After the second week, my time listening to radio had reduced because all the Ugandan hits that appeal to me were all on Tidal in that glorious high fidelity sound quality.
It comes with data: When MTN said they will offer data for the first month, I thought they would provide actual data bundles for Tidal listening and I feared this would not work, but they instead provided data in the form of minutes. I got 43,200 minutes of tidal listening time which if you do the math is equal to 30 days.
The subscription options: When my free trial ended, I had to subscribe and unlike some other services we have to pay OTT (Over The Top). The options for the tidal subscription were convenient.
I could choose among a couple of days and a month with data. The best option was the one where I can just pay for subscription and not the data. The most expensive of the options is UGX 15,000 which is 30 days subscription with data. This is by far the bargain of the year.
There is an offline mode: There is a feature called Offline Mode where you can save play lists and albums on your device to listen to when you are offline. I used this feature a lot especially because I had to save on battery power through the day but the again who wouldn’t.
Over all, the tidal experience was great, but it did not come without a few shortfalls. The cons I got from the Tidal are more technical and on the side of MTN not necessarily the platform itself.
I need an active data bundle to stream
When MTN said they were giving data, what they seemed to mean was that they would give you Tidal minutes to stream, but those minutes would be active only when you had an active data bundle.
This defeats the purpose of the minutes. At times I ran out of data and still had my Tidal minutes, but I could not stream until I loaded another data bundle. It led me to wonder, why then does my data run out if streaming is based on the Tidal data?
You can only use it on your phone when you have an MTN sim card in it
This one is tricky. At the back of my mind it makes sense since MTN is the carrier of the service, but a little flexibility would not hurt.
During this period, I happened to take my MTN sim card out of the phone for a few hours and while it was out, I could not use Tidal even though I still had an active subscription.
You can read my first article on the MTN – Tidal partnership called Everything you need to know about the MTN – Tidal partnership
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Author: Daniel Odaka
Daniel is a writer and communications expert with a love for tech, science and cars. He believes technology is the doorway to improving how we live though to many, it is a complex and very difficult matter.