How to Use the SoundCloud App to Listen to Free Music

Share and discover new music with SoundCloud

SoundCloud is a social music platform that anyone can use to share and listen to music for free. If you’re already familiar with other popular social networks like Facebook and Twitter, you can think of SoundCloud as a similar type of service, but for music enthusiasts of all kinds.

Signing in to SoundCloud

SoundCloud App

SoundCloud is available for free for Android and iOS devices. If you don't already have a SoundCloud account, you'll have to create a new account so that you can start using it by visiting, or sign up via Facebook, Apple, or through your Google account.

Navigating the App

The SoundCloud platform really shines on mobile. Once you're in, you'll notice that the app has the following main sections to use to navigate through everything:


This is your personalized news feed, showing tracks posted and reposted by other SoundCloud users that you follow. Give any track a listen, repost it, like it, add it to a playlist or start a track station all directly from within your news feed.


If you're looking for a particular user or track, use the app's search function to find exactly what you're in the mood to listen to.


This is the tab where you can access all of your likes, recent stations, and playlists. You can also see your profile by tapping the three dots in the top right corner.

Music player

This tab will appear when you start playing a track. It allows you to easily access whatever you're currently listening to while you're browsing other tabs in the app.


From the Home tab, tap the arrow at the top labeled Stream to quickly browse through what's trending in music and audio. You can also browse through different music genres and forms of audio content.

Using the App for a Powerful Music Experience

The app can be used however you like, but here are three main ways you'll really want to take advantage of it:

Follow users you like to discover new music

When you click on a username, you'll be taken to their profile to see what they're posting and what playlists they have. You can follow them as you would on any other social network, and the tracks they post or share will show up in your home feed.

Create custom playlists

When you hear a track you like, you can tap the three dots on it to add it to any of your playlists. You can create as many playlists as you want that are public for other users to enjoy or private just for your own use.

Start a station to hear a series of similar tracks

When you don't have the time or patience to carefully pick out the tracks you want in your own playlists, tap the three dots on any track you like to have the app play a station with tracks that are similar. And you can always access your most recent stations from your profile.

Doing More With SoundCloud on the Web

The SoundCloud mobile app has a clean look that's easy to use and doesn't overwhelm you with too many features. Despite this, some users may be wondering how they can do more. Here are some extra features you can use on SoundCloud when you sign in to your account on the web at

Download or buy tracks

On the web, some tracks may show a Download or Buy link beneath them next to the Share button, which is not visible on the mobile app. Many tracks are downloadable for free and purchasable.

Upload your own tracks

SoundCloud is social, meaning that anyone can upload their own music or audio tracks. At the moment, you can't upload music from the mobile app; you have to click the Upload button at the top of the page via the web version of SoundCloud.

Message other users

It's somewhat odd that private messaging isn't currently supported on the SoundCloud app, but perhaps that will change with future updates. For now, you can only message other users from the web.

Join and participate in groups

You can join groups on SoundCloud where users can share enjoy their favorite tracks. To access the groups you've joined, click on your name on the web version and select Groups.

Receive notifications from users who interact with you

Just like so many other social networks, SoundCloud has a notification center in the top menu of the web version where you can see who has recently followed and interacted with you.

A Must-Have App

If you want to discover and listen to free music, SoundCloud really is a must-have app to have installed on your device. It's one of the few free music services that really puts the social component into the listening experience.

Was this page helpful?