Down the road: possible shakeout in streaming music services?

Posted on: March 8, 2018

“Hundreds of millions of listeners have made the leap to streaming, abandoning CDs and downloads for free and monthly subscription services like Pandora, Spotify, SoundCloud, Apple Music and Amazon Prime Music,” writes Jefferson Graham in Sunday’s (3/4) USA Today. “But the business has been treacherous, at least when it comes to turning a profit…. Late last week, Internet radio station iHeartRadio moved closer to bankruptcy…. Analysts expect to see a big shakeout in the coming years among on-demand music services…. Apple and Amazon … can probably afford to keep offering streaming, no matter how high the costs…. Pandora … has been struggling to turn a profit since its founding in 2000…. Spotify, the No. 1 music subscription service … more than doubled [its loss] from the year earlier…. Napster, the subscription service run by Rhapsody … doesn’t make money…. Firms can only struggle for so long. Analysts who follow the music business expect some acquisitions, say one of the big tech companies eventually buying Spotify or Pandora for other means…. Pandora has a minority investment from Liberty Media’s SiriusXM, which could pair Pandora with its satellite subscriptions…. But … these are still likely streaming music’s golden years.”

Posted March 8, 2018