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News October 5, 2022

Apple Music Beats Spotify in the Race to 100 Million Songs

Senior Journalist, B2B
Apple Music Beats Spotify in the Race to 100 Million Songs

Apple Music has 100 million reasons to celebrate.

The popular digital music platform now boasts a licensed catalog of 100 million songs, a far cry from the 200,000 tracks that were digitally racked in iTunes Music Store when it launched 2003 in the United States.

And it’s a figure that easily eclipses the 80 million-strong catalog of rival Spotify.

Apple Music’s Australia-born global head of editorial Rachel Newman had the honours of sharing the tech giant’s big boast.

“One hundred million songs — it’s a number that will continue to grow and exponentially multiply,” she writes on Apple’s blog. “But it’s more than just a number, representing something much more significant — the tectonic shift in the business of music making and distribution over these past two decades.”

Each day, over 20,000 singers and songwriters are delivering new songs to Apple Music, Newman continues.

At Apple Music, human curation is at the heart of it all. “Now more than ever,” she continues, “we know that investment in human curation will be key in making us the very best at connecting artists and audiences.”

With 100 millions songs, “human curation is more important than ever for connecting artists and fans.”

To help listeners sift through the tunes (and noise), the U.S.-based company launches the Apple Music Today series, which sees a new song selected every day, and its editorial team diving in for a deep background check.

Newman has been a big part of Apple Music’s growth.

She joined Apple in 2009, during which time she has served as iTunes Australia and New Zealand Manager, Music and General Manager, iTunes, App Store and iBookstore, ANZ, and is now based at the company’s HQ in Cupertino, California.

She’s credited with guiding the 2020 launch of Apple Music TV and was name-checked this year in Billboard’s 2022 Power List.

Apple isn’t chilling on its milestone. The business added Spatial Audio and Lossless Audio in 2021, and, later in the year, rolled out thousands of DJ mixes, powered by Shazam.

Later this year, a new app is rumoured to drop, Apple Classical, which would be geared towards the classical music fan.

Apple Music launched in 2015 as the hub for the company’s digital music activity. At the time, its library contained about 30 million songs, licensed from the majors and independents.

What Apple Music hasn’t posted about for some years is its subscription base.

Apple Music revealed in June 2019 that its platform had accumulated 60 million subscribers. The 100 million subscribers milestone is in reach. Earlier this year, JP Morgan forecast Apple Music subscriber base to reach 110 million by 2025.

Spotify, which launched in 2008 and claims over 80 million tracks, has 433 million listeners (including 188 million subscribers) across 183 markets.

Read Newman’s blog piece here.


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