Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Amazon streaming music service now has “tens of millions” of paying subscribers | UNLIMITED | CMU

Amazon Music Unlimited

As Spotify goes public, Amazon’s rival streaming music service is quietly growing, now boasting “tens of millions” of paying subscribers. What’s more, Amazon Music’s Vice President Steve Boom says that this figure has doubled in the last six months.

Boom was not forthcoming with a specific number of subscribers, as Amazon never has been, but seemingly confirmed that the company is now a significant competitor for Spotify and Apple Music. They have both recently confirmed their paying subscriber numbers as 71 million and 36 million respectively.

Speaking to Billboard, Boom put Amazon’s recent success down to the company’s smart speakers and the diversity of subscription options for its music service. As well as the standard $9.99 a month option, Amazon Prime members get a discount, while the service is cheaper still if users opt to access it only via their Amazon Echo smart speaker. There is also a family plan and student discount, as offered by rivals.

“There’s been a lot written about streaming and about smart speakers, but [articles] still talk about it as if this is some future state”, he says. “We know better than that – it’s actually happening right now. We wouldn’t have grown to this scale if it hadn’t been happening already”.

He continues: “Our goal has been to expand the premium streaming market segment, not to run in a horse race with the other players each going after the same demographic”.

As such, he says that the company is attracting customers who are “either new to streaming in the first place, or new to premium streaming”, rather than just relying on smart-phone centric “early adopters” which, he reckons, have been the main target for other streaming services. “Not everybody wants to listen to music on a smartphone, it turns out”, he adds.

While this newer side of Amazon’s digital music adventure grows, another is slowly closing down. Having already announced plans to wind down its digital music locker service last year, a further level of functionality in it is about to be removed.

Although it is expected that Amazon Music Storage users will be able to stream and download music bought via Amazon until early next year, at the end of this month any user-uploaded tracks sitting in a locker will be deleted unless said user pro-actively requests otherwise.

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