The music streaming industry is experiencing an incredible rise. A few years ago it was very difficult to imagine the development of this music market exponentially. Among the world-class music streaming services, I would like to mention the Swedish service Spotify, which owns a share of the streaming music market of at least 40%. This means that almost every second streaming occurs on this platform.
But competitors are not sitting idly by. For example, the well-known streaming service Amazon Music is trying to get close to the market leader in many ways, and even get ahead of it. The world’s largest online store has long created its own music streaming service and is trying its best to develop it.
Music hit the Amazon.com Inc. priority list. thanks to the popularity of the Echo speakers and the Alexa virtual assistant. Music is one of Alexa’s most frequent searches, and the number of hours listened has doubled over the past year, according to the company.
Amazon provides several metrics to support the growing popularity of its music offerings, and does not indicate how much it plans to spend on its current advertising campaign.
But the Seattle-based company claims tens of millions of people use its two music services. Amazon Music is part of an Amazon Prime subscription and offers a library of 65 million songs with a limited number of new releases. Amazon Music Unlimited contains tens of millions of songs and charges a monthly fee.
The growth of these paid services drove sales in the music industry for three years, paying huge dividends to the recording industry. Now labels are turning to Amazon, as well as YouTube and Pandora Media Inc., to take on Apple and Spotify. If the new players can get enough customers, the two leaders will lose influence in the rights negotiations.
Amazon has brought its music service to more than 135 countries by hiring a team of former industry executives and flavor makers to plan playlists, search for exclusive albums, and create daily new features like Song of the Day.
The music service helped Amazon set the Echo and Alexa apart from the competition. Selling smart speakers is the latest battleground between tech giants Apple Inc., Amazon and Google Alphabet Inc., each of which runs music services.
The company says it’s not targeting Apple Music or Spotify Technology SA, but a different consumer. Its target audience is somewhat different from the average for these streaming music services. The average Amazon shopper is slightly older and less focused on hip-hop and R&B. But in this case, the company is trying to catch up. While Amazon is a major online music retailer, it is a minor player in streaming compared to the market leader, Spotify.
Spotify has convinced over 160 million people to pay for its services, increasing its market value to around $45 billion. Apple, once a leader with iTunes, has positioned itself as number two in the streaming market with a market share of around 25%, allowing the streaming site to also be a trendsetter in the music streaming industry.
The Swedish music streaming service is firmly holding the market leadership and is gradually increasing its share of it, despite all the incredible efforts and means expended by its direct competitors.