Apple Music on course to overtake Spotify in USA 'this summer'

Isaac Cain
February 6, 2018

Apple Music is growing its subscriber base in the United States by 5 percent every month compared to Spotify's 2 percent. Assuming those growth rates continue, Apple will overtake Spotify in accounts this summer. Ten-year-old Spotify, by contrast, only has a two percent monthly growth rate. Also, all Apple Music subscribers are entered automatically into a free initial three-month period. Combined with the marketing money that Apple has poured into the music streaming service, Apple Music subscriptions rates are bound to increase over time.

Apple has always tried to align itself with the music industry. The paid user growth of Apple Music is simply outpacing Spotify, which many thought was inevitable.

Watching how the digital streaming platforms' subscribers race has unfolded over the last half decade is a fascinating study in new digital capitalism.

Getting the exact number of listeners for the music streaming services is a challenging task for the simple reason that they have unique ways to define their total number of audience size. Pandora, an Oakland-based service that predates Spotify, has severely struggled; its founder and CEO Tim Westergren stepped down from the company last June but a new regime has yet to overturn its depressing share prices.

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However, neither company publicly discloses its country-level subscriber numbers.

The figures are not representative of worldwide trends, however, as Spotify is still leading with nearly twice as many paying subscribers.

This investment tactic is common for smaller companies, but Spotify would be the largest direct listing ever.

Apple Music is growing at a faster pace than Spotify in the United States and soon it may overtake Spotify.

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