Music streaming services have become a large part of how we discover new music, how we listen to music and allows us to curate our music into playlists. Amidst stiff competition, streaming services continue to reinvent themselves to attract and retain users. Apple following the failed take-off of Apple radio purchased Beats and turned it to Apple Music to compete with the likes of Spotify. The same has happened with Pandora, currently reworking its business model to boost popularity among users. Jay-Z’s Tidal offers users high definition music at a much higher price with plans to venture into video streaming.
SoundCloud is perhaps the most popular streaming service out there often referred to as the YouTube of audio owing to its immense music catalogue. Last year, we told you that SoundCloud faced a potential suit over payment of loyalties. The service failed to enter into licensing agreements with music right holders including songwriters, composers and music publishers. SoundCloud in a rejoinder said it was a platform for creators by creators and that it had thousands of license deals with these right holders. In 2015 also, reports emerged that SoundCloud was signing deals with record labels in a bid to launch a paid streaming service model. According to plans, SoundCloud will now charge users $9.99 for its new service called SoundCloud Go, which will include premium tracks, along with offline listening, and no ads.
SoundCloud has 175 Million unique monthly users across the globe with 40 million registered users. The service has 12 million content creators who upload their content on the site. Billed as a platform for creators, SoundCloud charges them $7 and $15 per month for the ability to upload more than the standard 12 hours of audio, plus analytics and more content controls according to Tech Crunch.