Forbes India – Music, Spotify, Apple Music: Should music streaming sites fear the same fate as Netflix?

Subscribers to paid music platforms proceed to extend their listening time. Picture: Nikkimeel / Shutterstock

Times are robust for subscription-based video streaming providers, as Netflix has seen its subscriber base shrink for the primary time in 10 years. That is a trigger for concern for music streaming suppliers, who worry their development will sluggish after two years of the pandemic.

The information got here as a shock – Netflix misplaced 200,000 subscribers in three months, whereas analysts had anticipated it to realize 2.5 million. The video streaming chief explains this collapse by the conflict in Ukraine, however primarily by structural components akin to account sharing and competitors from new market entrants.

Consultants are actually involved that the identical phenomenon will have an effect on streaming music. This market has grown up to now. Actually, streaming is now the primary strategy to hearken to music world wide. Of the $25.9 billion in income generated from recorded music in 2021, $16.9 billion will come from streaming, or 65% of the full, as detailed by the Worldwide Federation of the Phonographic Business (IFPI) in its newest annual report. Between 2020 and 2021, revenues from any such music consumption thus elevated by 24.3%.

This improve is principally attributable to paid subscription streaming, with income development of 21.9%. And – excellent news for Spotify, Apple Music and others – subscribers to paid music platforms are continually growing their listening time. They now spend 1 hour and 33 minutes listening to music as an alternative of 1 hour and 26 minutes, based on a latest GWI research of media consumption. This pattern is seen in all areas of the world, though it continues to be pushed primarily by the Americas (Latin and North) in addition to Africa and the Center East. That is excellent news for trade gamers, who’re multiplying enlargement initiatives into these territories – Spotify within the lead. In November, the Swedish group was launched within the Republic of Congo, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Libya and Iraq.

The music reveals resistance

The spectacular well being of streaming music would possibly come as a shock in comparison with its video-based counterpart. However that is testomony to the dominant place that music — and extra usually audio content material — now occupies in our lives. For a lot of, music has been an actual supply of consolation in the course of the pandemic. Video streaming platforms have served the identical operate, however that impact is beginning to wane within the face of latest value will increase. In response, many households are slicing again on leisure spending. This pattern is especially seen within the UK, the place the variety of households subscribing to at the very least one streaming service dropped by 215,000 in the course of the first quarter of 2022, based on Kantar. “In occasions of economic uncertainty, providers should be indispensable within the minds of subscribers,” Dominic Sunnebo, director of worldwide imaginative and prescient at Kantar Worldpanel, advised The Guardian. “In consequence, it’s now extra essential than ever for SVoD suppliers to display to shoppers how indispensable their providers are at residence in what has turn into a extremely aggressive market.”

However music streaming platforms nonetheless appear to be spared. The urge for food for this type of leisure persists for a wide range of causes, akin to the necessity to disconnect and the power to hearken to tens of millions of songs every time (and wherever) you need. “The fantastic thing about audio is that it may be consumed together with different media or behaviors, and it normally is,” explains GWI in its newest research. One other benefit for Spotify, Deezer and the like is that music streaming is a mode of consumption adopted by everybody, no matter age. Gen Z and Millennials significantly like him. They spend 1 hour and 55 minutes and 1 hour and 43 minutes respectively on this exercise per day. That is considerably greater than Child Boomers, who clearly want radio (1 hour and 5 minutes versus 40 minutes for streaming music).

Whereas music streaming is usually doing effectively, it stays an especially aggressive market. Sweden’s Spotify nonetheless reigns supreme, despite the fact that it’s now adopted by rising gamers like China’s Tencent Music and NetEase Cloud Music. They account for 18% of worldwide market subscribers, though they’re solely obtainable within the Center Kingdom, based on analytics agency Midia Analysis. One other (modest) competitor is Deezer, the French pioneer of on-line music listening. The platform lately entered into “a definitive merger settlement” with listed firm I2PO because it prepares to go public. He backed out of a earlier try in 2015, citing “unfavorable market circumstances”. Circumstances seem like rather more favorable now – proof, maybe, that music streaming doesn’t (but) meet the identical destiny as Netflix.

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