Spotify currently has about twice the number of paid subscribers compared to Apple Music, but a report claims that Apple's music streaming service will take the lead by summer.
Ever since Apple Music launched in June 2015, its goal was to chase Spotify in terms of paid subscribers. It appears that the achievement will be completed after three years, if both music streaming services retain their current growth rates.
Apple Music To Overtake Spotify By Summer
Earlier this year, Spotify revealed that it has 70 million paid subscribers, double the 36 million subscribers of Apple Music. It would appear that Spotify has an insurmountable lead over Apple Music, but according to a report from The Wall Street Journal, the gap will disappear in a few months.
The report reveals that the growth rate of Apple Music paid subscribers is much faster than that of Spotify. According to sources in the record business who are familiar with the figures provided by the two music streaming services, Apple Music is on track to become the industry leader by this summer.
Spotify's growth rate of paid subscribers is at 2 percent, and over the past seven months, it has increased its user base by 16 percent. Those numbers are actually impressive but pale in comparison to Apple Music's growth rate of 5 percent.
What This Means For Apple Music And Spotify
Apple Music has been growing at a breakneck pace. In fact, if the subscribers still on the free three-month trial period are taken into account, it already has more subscribers compared to Spotify.
There is no specific explanation on why Apple Music is rapidly catching up to Spotify, but it likely has to do with Apple's dominance in the smartphone market of the United States, with a 44.8 percent market share by November 2017. Combined with the marketing money that Apple has poured into the music streaming service, Apple Music subscriptions rates are bound to increase over time.
On the other hand, for Spotify, the news comes at a very interesting time. The music streaming service is reportedly planning to go public within the year, perhaps as soon as the end of March, with an unconventional plan to list its shares on the New York Stock Exchange and let the market dictate its movement, instead of hiring an investment bank to sell shares on the company's behalf.
It remains to be seen whether losing the market leader status to Apple Music will have any effect on Spotify's non-traditional IPO and the willingness of investors to buy into the company.