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AAA Music | 24 April 2024

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Amazon Launches Music-Streaming Service In The States

| On 13, Jun 2014


It’s official: There is another competitor in the ever-expanding realm of music-streaming services, and it just so happens to be one of the biggest web-based companies in the world. Multi-faceted e-commerce site Amazon has entered the foray with Amazon Prime Music (APM), a service that launched this past Thursday (June 12) in the States and is set to compete with the likes of Spotify and Pandora. Well, that’s the plan in the near future, at least, because APM has some growing to do if it hopes to stand shoulder to shoulder with those names.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Amazon’s service has launched with 1 million songs available for streaming. You can compare that (per the WSJ’s attached picture below) with the 20 million on Spotify and 1.5 million on Pandora. To that end, Amazon Digital Music Vice President Steve Boom said the following: “You’re going to see a lot of songs from the Billboard 100, but you’re not going to see a lot of new releases.” He remains confident that there’s “something for everyone” on his company’s service, just not as much of that something.


As you can also see in the WSJ‘s visual breakdown, the price for APM is built into what a Prime member is already paying for that service. The main issue there, though, is that it’s only available in the U.S. and it’s note clear when Amazon will expand Prime Music to the U.K.—and the remainder of the world. That’s where its competition, (again) Spotify and Pandora), are clearly ahead of the pack. That being said, there is more that those companies and others involved with streaming music could stand to expand their grasp. And in this writer’s opinion, it’s in the area of promotions and rewards. One place these music companies need to start looking toward is online gaming.

This notion is one that’s so far-fetched when you think about it. In fact, Billboard even wrote a similarly minded article in early 2013 because they found that casinos and gaming companies know how to do it right when it comes to improving the customer experience. Basically, instead of getting all up in arms when users want their music for free, record labels and streaming-music companies need to find a way to offer perks to existing and potential clients.

Take what the site InterCasino is doing right now as an example. By taking part in their VIP Programme, players get personalised gifts, their own manager, birthday bonuses, and other benefits. Basically, users are enticed to enroll in the programme because they know they’ll get something back and, clearly, it’s been working. MarketWatch recently reported that InterCasino’s parent company, Intertain Group Limited, “entered into a share purchase agreement to acquire the entire issued share capital of Mandalay Media Limited (a leading online bingo company)” for some £45 million.

Smartphone gaming companies have employed a somewhat-similar strategy. Many of the most popular mobile games, from Clash of Clans to Candy Crush Saga, are free-to-play experiences that can be expanded if you feel like it. Basically, you can play them for free all you want without ever paying. However, if you’d like to have more content, additional items, or an improved gaming experience, you can throw down some money and get it in an instant. It’s through this strategy that Candy Crush, for example, earns over £500,000 in revenue daily, according to Think Gaming.

Now, how exactly these music-streaming services can accomplish this isn’t clear, but hey, that’s up for them to decide right? We can’t be giving them too many free pieces of advice, but hopefully this is one they—and the rest of the industry, for that matter—will take seriously.