Apple Music vs Spotify: Who Pays Artists More?


Over the years, it has become clear that Apple is much better at “fair play” than Spotify when it comes to Apple Music’s copyrights for artists. A new video posted to YouTube by independent music producer L.Dre this week confirms the discrepancy between Apple Music and Spotify, with details about royalties, payments, and more.

Apple first revealed how much it pays artists through Apple Music last year, saying it paid an average of $0.01 per broadcast to artists for individual paid plans in 2020. The company also noted that the number of artists who made more than $50,000 for each group. year doubled.

According to the video L.Dre posted, these numbers are still the same. Tidal pays the most per stream at $0.013, followed by Apple Music at $0.01 per stream. Spotify, on the other hand, pays $0.0033 per stream — significantly less than both Apple Music and Tidal, as well as Amazon Music, YouTube Music, and Deezer. The only company that pays lower rates than Spotify is Pandora.

L.Dre’s video delves into more depth on a pair of hit songs he owned on both Spotify and Apple Music, giving subtle details about the contrast between each platform.

#1 song: 4.7 million streams on Apple Music

Second: 4.5 million streams on Spotify

“This song on Apple Music definitely does a great job. Shout out to the Apple Music playlist gods. I got lucky, and this song landed in one of the biggest hip-hop playlists on Apple Music,” explains El Dre. “I didn’t show it or anything, I just got in there. It really shows you the impact of these playlists.”

But he also goes on to note that Spotify offers “much better” features for artists. This includes things like Shopify Merchandise integrations, better connectivity tools, and more. “[Apple Music] It’s still far, far, far away from Spotify for artists,” he explains.

Take 9to5Mac

The full video from L.Dre is well worth a watch and provides some interesting context on the current state of the streaming music industry. As he rightly notes, you can Just Look at pay-per-service rates as there are a number of other factors at play. You also have to remember that for non-independent artists, there are a lot of different people who take a portion of these payments.

However, I think Spotify will soon face increasing opposition from artists regarding how low its royalty payments are compared to Apple Music (and basically every other streaming service).

Apple Music also recently announced a price increase, and one of the reasons it pointed to this increase was the increase in licensing costs. Apple says this should result in artists getting more money, but specific details about the current revenue stats are unclear.

  • Individual: $10.99 per month (from $9.99)
  • Family: $16.99/month (from $14.99)
  • Annual per person: $109 per year (from $99)

Regardless of the artist-focused advice L.Dre offers, if you’re into a music streaming service, pay rates for artists are something you should keep in mind when choosing the service you want to use. This is especially true if you listen to a lot of independent artists whose primary source of income is Spotify and Apple Music checks.

(h/t Dave Mark)

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