Music streaming subscriptions grew 32 per cent in 2019 with Spotify leading the market: Report

Hemani Sheth Mumbai | Updated on April 04, 2020

Online music streaming subscriptions grew 32 per cent year-on-year (YoY) globally with 358 million subscriptions in the CY 2019, according to the latest report by Counterpoint Research.

The growth in music streaming subscriptions was largely due to the availability of exclusive content such as podcasts and originals. Promotional activities such as price cuts in subscriptions and bundled offers from telcos had added to the growth, the report said.

Regional and global players are focusing a lot on building exclusive content by acquiring podcast companies and creating individual channels.

“It’s often exclusive content that drives paid subscription growth,” the report said.

“Paid subscriptions grew 32% YoY compared to 23% YoY growth of total MAUs. This suggests people are ready to pay for music streaming for a hassle-free experience. However, this is not completely user-driven. Music streaming platforms are following a two-step approach to gain subscribers, first registering them to their platform as free users by means of excellent advertising campaigns and secondly pitching them with attractive offers to transfer them to become paying subscribers,” said Research Analyst, Abhilash Kumar.

Spotify remained the market leader in terms of subscriptions with 31 per cent share of the total revenue and a 35 per cent share of the total paid subscriptions. It was followed by Apple Music 24 per cent share of total revenues and a 19 per cent share of the total paid subscriptions. Amazon Music subscriptions grabbed 15 per cent of market share in terms of subscriptions while YouTube music had a 6 per cent share in CY 2019.

“Spotify maintained its top spot with the help of promotional activities like free Spotify Premium for three months, price cuts, customized campaigns like Spotify and a focus on exclusive content. Tech giants like Amazon, Apple, Google have started focusing on music streaming and have sufficient cash at their disposal to give stiff competition to Spotify. Apple Music is making improvements in its app like the introduction of night mode, curated playlists to target a group. Similarly, Amazon Music has been trying lossless music and is creating its own niche where it competes with Tidal,” Kumar added.

Regional players maintained a stronghold in their respective regions, the report said. Gaana, for instance, remained the top music streaming player in the Indian market as per the study.

The report also focused on the impact of the global Covid-19 pandemic on streaming habits.

“The traction of news channels and podcasts saw an upswing while that for music streaming dropped,” it said.

Counterpoint research further predicted a 25 per cent YoY growth in 2020 for music streaming services with subscriptions amounting to 450 million by the end of 2020.

Published on April 04, 2020

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