iPhone 7 Launch Coincides with Important Apple Music Milestone

Apple announced today during the iPhone 7 launch that Apple Music now has 17 million subscribers. Though the company needs to technically double the number to catch up with competitor Spotify, which had 30 million subscribers as of March 2016, it’s a huge achievement for Apple Music, which went live a short 14 months ago (June 2015). For the sake of comparison, Spotify was launched exactly 8 years ago in 2008.


An Apple Music subscription costs $9.99 for a single user, $14.99 for family of up to six members, and $4.99 for students, and it is vastly different from the iTunes store that we’re all familiar with.

Apple has long focused on selling songs via iTunes for +99 cents, sort of the old way of doing business. Though it allows you to download the song and own it for life, downloading all the songs we want was never an option unless we were ready to shell out hundreds of dollars every year.

In contrast, Apple Music is more like a rental service, but the difference is you pay $9.99 and get to listen any song from their collection of  over 30 million songs. Of course, you don’t get to download anything from Apple Music, but it gives you an impressive collection of music to stream to your device. This is what I typically do: with my Apple Music subscription I get to listen to practically hundreds of different genres through the month. If I like anything and want to own a copy, I simply head over to iTunes and buy it.

But that’s not all. Apple is also pushing hard into the original content space. Original programming, though expensive, lends a measure of exclusivity to the provider. And it’s also a great way to differentiate themselves from the competition while giving value for money.

Netflix has proven that there’s a very strong demand for this type of content, and other companies like Amazon, HBO, Google and now Apple have taken the cue and followed suit.

Apple is now creating an exclusive video series with the world’s first “hip-hop billionaire” and honorary Apple executive Dr. Dre. 45-year-old Andre Young, which is Dr. Dre’s real name, will have his life story told in Vital Signs, the new program that’s going to feature on Apple Music.

Apple’s foray into streaming video might be seen by many as a late move into a crowded space, but if it adds value to the non-device parts of the company’s income and offers an attractive proposition to its Music subscribers, then it’s worth the effort.

We have no idea how well the iPhone 7 will do after its launch today (around right now, in fact), but we do know that Apple needs more than just revenues from iPhones and other devices. They’ve already on track to making Apple Pay the prefered payment choice for iOS users, and now Apple Music is getting a really cool facelift with the Dr. Dre project.

As for how well Apple Music is doing until now, 14 months to get to 17 million subscribers is no mean feat, and it shows the power that Apple can harness out of its own user base. Apple has more than 1 billion active devices in the world and, according to Credit Suisse, a multinational financial services company,  there are nearly 588 million Apple users around the world. That’s a mind boggling number of users who will have Apple’s services just a click away. And since they’re using an Apple device anyway, then they really don’t mind spending a few extra dollars for a product that has the best services as a bonus.

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