iHeartRadio has announced that it has reached 85 million registered users. That's five million new registrants since January, making iHeartRadio the fastest-growing music streaming service, surpassing even Apple Music's rapid growth rate, while its total number of users is quickly approaching that of Spotify.

iHeartRadio appears to be on a roll these days, as the company has just reported that it has amassed over 85 million registered users. That indicates a jump of five million users since January, when the company announced it had reached the 80 million user milestone.

The significance of iHeartRadio's growth rate cannot be understated, as it has beaten even Apple Music in number of new subscribers. Apple just reported that Apple Music has recently added around one million new subscribers per month, for a total of 13 million for the paid subscription service, which launched last June.

iHeartRadio, which debuted in 2011, and unlike Apple Music, is a free service, is most similar in nature to Pandora in that it operates as a streaming radio service as opposed to an on demand streamer like Spotify, Apple Music and Tidal. iHeartRadio incorporates a network of hundreds of terrestrial radio stations into its app and streaming service, along with unique radio playlists. Spotify recently reported it had passed the 100 million user mark, which iHeartRadio is now within reach by year's end if it continues to grow at a similar pace. While Pandora still leads the pack by far with over 250 million registered users, 81 million of which are active monthly, the company's new registrant rate is now half that of iHeartRadio.

Whether that has to do with Pandora's market saturation or a shift in interest to iHeartRadio's more personality-driven stations that also offer local news, weather and information, is not clear. Nor has iHeartRadio provided statistics on its active monthly user base, which is a more important basis of comparison with Pandora than registered users.

Still, the announcement is certainly a bright spot for iHeartRadio's parent company iHeart Communications, formerly known as Clear Channel, which is currently saddled with debt and struggling to stay afloat. The company also announced that iHeartRadio is now available on 80 unique platforms, and thanked listeners, stating that "we continue to deliver on our promise to be everywhere that our users expect us to be. Of course, we couldn't have done any of this without our listeners, so consider this a heartfelt "thanks" from us to you!"

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