The music streaming service is currently available either based on individual subscription (for a single user, who has to shell out $9.99 per month), or on a family subscription (for up to six users, who can share the same plan, for $14.99 per month).
In its first three months, Apple Music was actually free of charge, allowing those interested in the streaming program to test it before making a final purchase.
This decision outraged performers such as Taylor Swift, who claimed that, during that free trial, artists, producers and songwriters would be deprived of their rightful earnings.
In fact, the singer was so vehement in her criticism against Apple Music that she even threatened that she would sabotage the service, by refusing to have her latest album 1989 available on the platform.
Eventually, Eddy Cue, Apple’s Internet Software and Services senior vice president, announced that in fact copyright owners and artists would still be paid for the songs that would be streamed using the app, even during those first 3 months meant to generate customer interest.
This way, the conflict was soon resolved, and Taylor Swift alongside numerous other artists agreed to allow their music to be streamed on the platform after all, and this vast library of tunes became increasingly more appealing to users.
In fact, Apple Music, available for iOS devices and also for Android ever since November, includes several interesting features, such as Siri integration.
Basically subscribers can issue verbal commands, which are processed by the digital assistant through its speech recognition software. This way, it’s possible for users to ask for a certain song or for an entire selection of music and have the platform automatically play it for them.
There is also a wide selection of Internet radio stations such as Beats 1, live 24/7 and staffed by 3 famous DJs : Julie Adenuga, Zane Lowe and Ebro Darden.
Also, Apple Music includes the Connect platform, serving as an interface between musicians and fans, and permitting exclusive audio and video content to be easily shared and propagated.
All these selling points have made more and more people to turn to this platform, making online music streaming an increasingly more competitive business.
This market segment used to be dominated by Spotify, which now has around 75 million active listeners and 20 million subscribers, paying monthly fees similar to those charged by Apple. There was also Pandora, with around 78 million active users per month, but just around 3.9 million paid members.
Despite the fact that Apple Music was the newcomer, it proved to be a force to be reckoned with: back in October, the company’s CEO, Tim Cook, announced that 6.5 million people had opted for the online music platform’s services, so this means that ever since that time the number of subscribers has soared by as much as 50%.
Even more remarkably, Apple Music’s latest milestone, of 10 million subscriptions, was achieved in less than half a year, whereas Spotify needed 6 years to benefit from such an extensive reach.
However, this success isn’t actually so surprising, given that Apple’s brand was already one of the most instantly recognizable in the world at the time of the launch, and the platform was available across 100 countries from day one.
Its rival in comparison didn’t benefit from this kind of traction, being based in Sweden originally, and only reaching the United States 3 years after its initial release, which occurred in October 2008.
Analysts now predict that if current trends continue, Apple Music will eventually dominate the online music streaming industry as early as 2017, vanquishing its more experienced competitors.
Image Source: Apple