Apple Music seems to be hitting the right note as the music streaming service has achieved a new milestone - it now has more than 20 million paying subscribers.
Nearly 17 months after the service was launched in June 2015, Apple Music has exceeded the 20 million paid subscribers figure.
The news of Apple Music crossing the milestone was revealed by Billboard on Tuesday, Dec. 6.
"Apple has released the latest numbers for the music subscription service Apple Music. In the 18 months since the service was launched, the tech giant reveals that it has just crossed the 20 million paid subscribers mark," revealed the publication.
Apple Music accounted for 17 million paid subscribers in September and the fact that it has added an additional 3 million in this three-month span would be encouraging for the Cupertino-based company.
In September, Apple Music was lauded as an early success by industry experts after it garnered 15 million subscribers in June. However, only 6.5 million of this number were paying for the service as acknowledged by Apple CEO Tim Cook.
Even though Apple Music has 20 million paid subscribers to boast of, it still lags behind rival music streaming service Spotify, which hit the 40 million paid subscribers mark in early September.
Spotify has added 12 million paid subscribers in 2016, compared to 10 million added by Apple Music. Nevertheless, analysts continue to be optimistic that Apple Music will likely be a success.
"If Apple reports between 30 million and 50 million trialists by year-end, then we can consider it successful. More than 5 million paying subscribers would be a success. Above 7 million would be a strong success," noted MIDiA Research's analyst Mark Mulligan in September.
Should Apple Be Worried?
Per Apple's Eddy Cue, senior vice president of Internet Software and Services, nearly 60 percent of Apple Music subscribers have not purchased any content from the iTunes Music Store in the past year. Of this 60 percent, a certain portion is composed of inactive users and "the vast majority are new customers." Moreover, nearly 50 percent of the subscribers of Apple Music reside outside the United States.
The percentage of dormant users and non-U.S. users is concerning and Apple would do well to take some steps to counter the inactive user base.
What may have contributed to Apple Music's paid subscriber number growth is that it has certain artists on board such as Chance the Rapper who are exclusive to the service. These artists have made it to the Billboard top 10 charts based on the streaming alone.
To push the service's paid subscriber growth, Apple could consider cutting down the prices for the Apple Music subscription, which stands at $14.99 per month for a family, $9.99 per month for one user and $4.99 per month for students.