Spotify vs. Apple Music: Which Streaming Platform Dominates?


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Over the course of the past few years, the music industry has only grown larger. Among the hundreds of music platforms, two remain head to head at the top. These two platforms are Apple Music and Spotify. Millions of listeners use one or both of these services and continue to increase their popularity.

As of October 2021, Spotify has about 165 million subscribers and around 365 million monthly active users. This statistic is an increase of 17.97% compared to the same time last year. As for Apple Music, this platform had around 72 million subscribers worldwide in June 2020. Compared to Spotify, Apple Music has 93 million more users. After researching both these platforms, Spotify seems to statistically dominate over Apple Music. Although, after conducting an interview between users of each platform, some interesting results were recorded. 

Interviewee Emmanuel Torode, a high school student at RHS, stated that he uses both Spotify and Apple Music and switches between each platform to enjoy his music. Although, between the two, Emmanuel stated 

“If I had to do anything for music research, I would choose to open up Apple Music due to the benefit of information they have on both the artist and their music.”

To contradict this statement, Spotify user Debi Sullivan stated,

“I enjoy the many benefits that Spotify offers including the personal playlists Spotify curates for you.” 

These playlists include “New Music Friday,” “Time Capsule,” “Repeat Rewind,” and many more that generate based on your listening history. For further insight, I also interviewed high school student Miah Moore who only uses Apple Music as her source for streaming. She stated, 

“I started using Apple Music because my phone came with a subscription for it. Since then, I’ve just gotten used to it.” 

After conducting each interview, each user had different reasoning for choosing each platform. This shows that both streaming platforms are able to offer their subscribers a plethora of features that they can enjoy.

To gain some further knowledge about each interviewee, I proceeded to ask them how much they listen to music on a daily basis. First, Emmanual stated, 

“For me, I listen to music as a hobby and listen to it for up to 8 hours a day.” When asking Debi Sullivan this same question, she stated, 

“I listen to music every day. I listen the most while I am at work or in the car.” 

She also continued on to say, 

“I was sick of the songs on the radio and I wanted to make a playlist of songs that I personally enjoy and want to listen to offline.” 

To further explain this statement, one of the added features Spotify offers is “offline listening” which allows users to download music that will be available to play without service/wi-fi. As for Miah Moore, she stated, 

“I listen to music anyway that I can, especially with being involved in the choir and musicals.” 

With this being said, Apple Music can provide further details about each piece of music as you listen which could help if you were in a musical field similar to both Miah and Emmanuel. 

Artists that produce and release music play the biggest role in these streaming services. So, how do these artists promote these services? According to Emmanual, he sees his favorite artists promote Apple Music mainly on Snapchat. He stated, 

“On Snapchat, they promote ads on Apple Music mainly focused on the rap community.” He then added that “Spotify seems to promote more on sites such as TikTok and Instagram.” 

Overall, Spotify and Apple Music are both viable options for streaming music and will only continue to grow and develop as the years go by. With each containing different benefits, both remain to have something to satisfy everyone. Which would you choose?