Most of you still have local music files on your phones

Music player widget on smartphone

Hadley Simmons / Android Authority

Music streaming services It is a large company, with a lot of platforms available. They all work on the same principle, allowing you to pay a monthly subscription fee or provide free access to millions of music tracks.

In theory, this means that you don’t need to store local music files on your smartphone, and save them for music downloaded from these streaming services for offline playback. We were excited to see how many people have traditional music files on their phones, and here’s what you told us.

Do you have music files stored locally on your phone?


this was Huge public poll, with over 11,000 votes counted as of writing. The most popular choice? Well, almost 70% of the respondents said that they already have music files stored locally on their smartphone.

Several readers supporting this position noted in the comments that they loved having their entire music library available on their phones, while some indicated that they had music that could not be found on coveted streaming services. Some readers have also noted their preference for local music files due to the lack of an internet connection in some circumstances.

Related: Best Music Player Apps for Android

On the other end of the spectrum, 30.31% of readers surveyed said they don’t have local music files stored on their smartphone. Reader comments supporting this position indicated that the streaming services offer offline playback functionality anyway and cheap subscription prices. Another reader added that the cloud-based nature of streaming means you won’t lose your favorite music if something happens to your device.

Needless to say, this survey likely does not reflect smartphone users in general. It is interesting to see these results nonetheless.


  • Godwin Odo: There was a time I had a good library on my phone. After that, Google Play Music was still alive but in my country, I couldn’t stream, so my only option was to download somewhere else and stack. Then… the phone was lost, along with all my music. (Ironically, I can copy all the other stuff on my phone but not the music, because I didn’t see the need to fill my Google Drive app with just music)
    You broke me. That was when I decided to never download songs again, instead, I would just make my libraries online. I started streaming music with Boom Play Music, then Apple Music (which was the king of buggy Android apps at the time, you don’t know now), then Deezer (ah…good times), and then YTM.
  • Angus Irving: I don’t do it simply because I can’t be bothered. I use google music because it comes with YouTube Premium. I’m still only able to listen to whole albums. I see why you shouldn’t use digital music and play vinyl or CD, but I don’t see the benefits of downloading all that digital music to your phone when you can stream it in high quality or download from the app in high quality. Especially when you can often get these services at heavily discounted rates.
  • Glenn: I keep my entire music collection on my phone – hundreds of full albums and thousands of tracks. I’d still rather buy entire albums from artists I love than subscribe to any streaming services. I think artists get more pieces this way, and my music is always available whether or not I have a data connection (I’m a frequenter on the road and find myself off the grid a lot, so that’s important!)
  • Mark Classic: I have so many MP3’s from live 90s edm collections that it’s impossible to find anywhere else
  • Mikhail: My entire collection is on my phone and on my PC – mostly in FLAC format. I don’t stream and I won’t. I own my music, it’s DRM-free, and I wouldn’t get it any other way.
  • Haley the parrot: Yes I have. It’s when I’m offline and don’t have internet reception, or when the song I want is geo-restricted on music streaming platforms. I store it on a cheap micro SD card
  • Anton Kovalenko: How are you supposed to seamlessly listen to music on the go? Even densely populated areas still have dark spots in mobile internet reception, not to mention that streaming services don’t have it all.
  • 919 – Kinnickerver: yes. 120 GB of music on my phone. why? Because my job routinely takes me to the middle of the ocean, and my motorcycle ride routinely takes me to any phone service areas. So music files have always been necessary. You don’t want to get rid of them either.
  • Dan: I travel a lot, and…believe it or not, there are still places where there’s no cell phone signal, no FM, no AM, so…I have something to listen to.
  • Timothy: Yes…but only Garth Brooks, because he refuses to put his music anywhere but Amazon Music, and I refuse to use Amazon Music. Everything else I only use Spotify.
  • Leger 21: no. I mostly stream music on my phone. If I want high quality music, I just listen to vinyl at home or subscribe to a Hi-Fi streaming service. I rarely find myself without Wi-Fi or cellular signal, so local storage is unnecessary for me.
  • chizuma: Nope, apart from downloading all my playlists from YouTube Music, I haven’t stored music locally on my phone in many years.