Music streaming is big business these days and a range of competing services having sprung up in the past few years to meet growing consumer demand. Apple was a little late to the party, its streaming service launched at the end of June 2015, but is well on the way to becoming one of, if not the biggest service providers in the future.
According a report from the Financial Times, Apple Music has already surpassed 10 million subscribers within its first six months. It took industry leader Spotify six years to hit the same figure. Spotify is still the leading music streaming platform with around 20 million paying customers and 75 million monthly listeners. However, Apple Music has leapt into second place ahead of Dezer, which has around 6.3 million subscribers, and Tidal, which last reported only 1 million users. Based on the current rate of growth, the report predicts that Apple Music could become the leading music steaming service sometime in 2017.
This early surge isn’t really surprising, as the service immediately launched in 100 territories and Apple is already well established in the music download business through iTunes. The company has also been pushing its service in front of hundreds of millions of its hardware customers, although only around 1 percent have actually signed up for the service. Apple has also been temping consumers with three month free trials, but only time will tell how many of these translate into long term customers.
Regardless of how well Apple’s platform performs over the next couple of years, music streaming is expected to become the dominant method of consuming music. Album downloads fell 9 percent in 2014 and individual track sales were down by 12 percent, according to Nielsen Music data. By comparison, streaming demand has increased by 50 percent to 164 billion songs streamed a year.
Which music streaming service are you using, or are you still downloading tracks or even purchasing physical CDs?