Apple Music and Spotify fight for the Music Industry
If the Music Industry is the little fish and Spotify is the big fish. Then Apple Music is the bigger fish.
The music industry is constantly evolving and growing. From software like Prism promoting the growth of live music (learn more here), more independent artists making it in the mainstream, and new genre-bending talent exploding in popularity. Another aspect of the industry that is always evolving is the way listeners consume their music. CDs continue to reduce in sales as industry giants fight to become the most streamed. Speaking of, the World Wide Developers Conference in San Francisco didn’t have the grandest of updates for the Apple ecosystem but none-the-less they added huge changes to what’s to come. One of them being their unapologetic drop of Apple Music. With Apple tightening its grips on music again, artist and other streaming services tremble in frustration. Music is art concerned with combining vocal or instrumental sound.
During the Keynote, Spotify CEO, Daniel Ek tweeted: “Oh ok”, but quickly deleted it. It was too late however; the world had seen his slight irritation. It’s easy to see why Spotify CEO Daniel Ek would be frustrated with the news. Apple Music plans on destroying his company and it’s obvious. How else would you describe the service being available on Android, something that is a first and only for Apple?
Can Spotify Hold it’s ground?
Investors seem to think Spotify is worth the fight. The company that makes very little profit seems to have raised $526 Million in addition to its previous funds, making the company seem like it’s worth quite a bit, and why not– right? Spotify has added a lot of features that prove its plans aren’t only to take over the music scene but to rival up against YouTube as well and offer podcast as well as original content.
Just a day after Apple’s announcement, Spotify took to its blog to let people know that it’s still on top and that’s where it intends to be, reaching 20 million subscribers and more than 75 Million active users as of June 10th, 2015. Most importantly however Spotify wants its users to know that they’re paying billions in royalties for the content. Yes, the music industry is losing money in the streaming services provided by companies such as Spotify, but the royalties are providing a profit, even if the profit is less than previously obtained, pre-itunes era.
Not to mention, the popularity of Spotify from new artists is unparalleled to Apple Music. New artists can put their music onto Spotify and even use some of the best sites to buy Spotify plays to grow their account and gain popularity from real followers. This means that Spotify provides more opportunities for this crowd of people and this could be something that is letting Apple Music down.
So what is Apple Offering in Comparison to It’s Counterpart?
Well the service is still $9.99 per month matching that of Spotify, however its leg up is that for only 5 dollars more you can add up to 6 members to the account. Both have free options, and offer exclusive content, however Apple owns royalties to what it calls, “Tens of Millions” of music. We know that Spotify offers 30 million songs in its library, so we’ll have to wait and see what that “Ten’s of Millions” refers to. Now although Spotify’s new running feature that selects songs that match your running to the tempo is really neat, Apple does have one major advantage that could really shift things in their favor.
Apple Announced More than Just a Streaming Service, it Announced a Platform.
BeatsOne, the first and only radio station to broadcast world wide and 24/7 will reunite listeners and radio. Pandora has dwindled slowly but surely and so has other internet radio. The local stations are struggling to keep millennial attention as we shift to streaming services. BeatsOne offers endless content, minimal regulation and un-tethered access. It’ll be a Goliath to fight against, and Spotify is no David, but they’ll need to step up to the plate and show us all how they can compete.
The Little Fish
We forget that music is a profession for a vast array of people, many who don’t see the light of stardom yet provide quality content and only require the right platform to expand. Mark Burgess, a musician living in SoCal studied Jazz and solely makes a living through music, treads the topic providing some insight from the majority; on how users may react to Apple’s news.
Seems like too little too late to me. iTunes has become so cluttered and cumbersome in the last couple of years, I actually stopped using it. So did most of my friends. Spotify seems to have the market dominated right now.
I just don’t see anything new or innovative in the making here. It just feels really “me too.” Maybe the social network part might develop as a community. Who knows.
Now most people enjoy keeping with what they know. Spotify is now familiar and that’s a good enough reason to keep most of its subscribers. Apple will have to use its branding to its advantage and attempt to pull users with quite a sale. It was Tidal that recently attempted to combat Spotify and fell to its dismal doom, lacking any real quality software which users scope for. It’s hard to feel the pain of a millionaire musician as their profession faces struggle against the heroin services of streaming for the damsels in poverty. Add the argument that piracy is dwindling as streaming strengthens and you have a near hopeless future for the aspiring musicians who are throwing pebbles at oceans of debatable content.
Mark comments on Tidal:
I heard about it. It lasted what, a week? The problem is how are you going to put the genie back in the bottle. Free is free. I pay for a spotify subscription so now am I going to switch that to Apple? Probably not. There is also the YouTube factor, whereby everything is still free. They can make people take stuff down, but it’s like Whack-a-mole, it just pops up somewhere else.
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Check out some of Mark’s music here.