March 18, 2019 / 8:28 PM

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Prince's Album 'HITNRUN' no Longer a Tidal Exclusive, Technically



While you still can't stream Prince's HITNRUN anywhere but Tidal (sorry Spotify fans), it's technically no longer a Tidal exclusive so there are other options. Now you can purchase the physical CD directly from Jay Z's streaming service or one of the more established digital marketplaces such as Amazon or iTunes.

It was previously thought you'd have to acquire a Tidal subscription ($9.99 for standard quality or $19.99 for HiFi) in order to hear the pop icon's latest efforts, but Tidal is delving into the old technologies of CDs in an attempt to be more competitive and artist friendly in a crowded cast of streaming services.

The digital MP3 of HITNRUN will cost the same as the iTunes $9.99 price tag with high quality FLAC files running $17.99. However, the physical CD will run you a pricy $25 after shipping costs are included. More surprisingly, it doesn't require a Tidal subscription to purchase the files, although you need to make a free account.

Speaking to a Tidal representative, Billboard said it's still unknown whether this new distribution model will be available to other artists.

When Prince announced his new album and the exclusive Tidal deal a month ago, it was unclear how long the window would last and now we have the answer -- not very long. Even though Prince's music, including his entire discography, hasn't made it back onto competing music streaming services such as Spotify, YouTube, Apple Music or Google Play Music, it's good to know fans can get their hands on the music without a long-term commitment to a wavering music streaming service.

Still, it's a very odd move for Tidal to make and one that signals that the streaming service is cracking under the weight of the competition. CDs have long been seen as an outdated format ever since iTunes began to dominate the market with digital downloads. While CD sales continue to drop, vinyl sales seem to be on an endless rise, so it's a wonder as to why Tidal wouldn't print some glossy vinyl to sell through their store.

Watch the HITNRUN teaser trailer below.

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