Apple Music Is Smashing the Skin off Spotify in the Subscriber Wars

By the summer, Apple's streaming service is set to have overtaken Spotify's subscriber base.

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Feb 5 2018, 3:06pm

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Talking about streaming services is boring. Unless you’re on a date with a freak who gets hot over analytics, it’s unlikely they’ll be impressed by cool stats about how the unprecedented recovery of the music industry has been fueled by services like Spotify and Apple Music. On the list of Inanimate Objects That Happen To Exist In The World And Should Not Be Used As Conversation Starters, streaming ranks somewhere between Eddie Stobart lorries, dust, and shower grout.

Despite this however we (read: music journalists and music fans) return time and time again to feed at the trough of streaming service competition. Who is smashing who? Which popular multi-million pound business is about to slam an uppercut into the jaw of the other? One day, we pray, our bodies will be given to the soil and we will enter the great streaming service in the sky where the Solfeggio scales play on repeat but until then we will continue to talk about the streaming wars.

And so it is to today’s news that Apple Music are cracking the teeth out of and smashing the toenails off Spotify as far as a paid subscriber base is concerned. Or, as the Wall Street Journal reports in a much more factual manner—Apple Music (is) on Track to Overtake Spotify in US Subscribers. Though Apple Music launched four years after Spotify got to the US (the fruit one went online in 2015), WSJ reports that Apple’s subscriber base is growing at 5 percent which, compared with Spotify’s 2 percent, puts them on track to become market leaders in the United States in the (hopefully) hot summer of 2018.

So what does this mean for you, dear reader? Maybe nothing. It's just more information! Still it is worth saying that Apple Music’s Beats 1 station is probably one of the greater inventions of the post-MP3 music industry and the more subscribers it gets, the more it will continue to deliver the kind of content you should definitely be hearing. Think top tier interviews, artist-led shows and a way to break new artists that feels organic, humane and not decided by a computer.

Meanwhile Spotify continues to lead the market in a host of other territories, with almost twice as many subscribers globally than Apple. Since the Swedish crew arrived here in the UK in 2009 they’ve seemed to be the more popular service, all of which hasn’t stopped them from recently launching a new audio program focusing on podcasts. For fans of brawling between multinational tech companies it seems as though this fight is far from over. May we all stand on the sidelines tweeting until the world disintegrates into a great hunk of plastic in a freezing cold Arctic sea, streaming the Noisey playlist.

You can find Ryan on Twitter.

This article originally appeared on Noisey UK.

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