Apple Music streaming service surpasses 10m users milestone

11 Jan 2016

Streaming is now the dominant platform for consuming music, but curiously sales of vinyl LPs are on the rise too

In just six months, Apple has reached 10m subscribers for its Apple Music service, a milestone that it took rival Spotify six years to achieve.

The milestone also comes less than two months after Apple decided to extend the service to users of Google’s Android operating system for smartphones and tablets.

Apple CEO Tim Cook said in October that more than 6.5m people had signed up for the $10-a-month service.

Spotify has 20m paid subscribers and 75m people use the service for free in lieu of listening to advertising.

French streaming site Deezer has more than 6.3m users. Tidal, the artist-owned service led by Jay Z, has an estimated 1m subscribers.

2015 was a very good year for streaming services

According to the latest research from Nielsen, 2015 was a good year for streaming services, with 317bn streams counted, double 2014 where 164bn songs were streamed.

The decline in album sales also appears to be steadying, with album sales down 6pc in 2015, compared with 11pc in 2014.


Sales of individual tracks on sites like iTunes were down 12.5pc to 964.8m in 2014 from 1.1bn in 2014.

Interestingly, sales of vinyl records are on the rise, probably thanks to the hipsters’ love of crackling, authentic audio. Sales of vinyl were up 30pc and accounted for 9pc of physical album sales.

The biggest genre for vinyl? Rock, with 68pc of LP sales, according to Nielsen.

Apple Music image via Shutterstock

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years