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Apple Music now pays artists twice as much as Spotify per stream

Apple Music has sent a letter to artists and labels informing them that the streaming service now pays, on average, double per stream in comparison to their main competitor, Spotify.

Spotify is the largest streaming service by some margin and has come under immense scrutiny for the minimal fees they payout to artists. Figures that emerged last year showed that the streaming giant paid $0.00437 per stream in the US while Apple Music paid artists $0.00735 on average.

The letter, which Wall Street Journal has seen, was sent by Apple Music to labels and publishers. They also posted the note on the platform’s artist dashboard, where they proudly proclaimed that Apple Music now pays one cent per stream on average. However, the streaming platform did add that that rates paid to artists vary based on subscription plans and even the geographical location of listeners.

“As the discussion about streaming royalties continues, we believe it is important to share our values,” the streaming service said in the letter. “We believe in paying every creator the same rate, that a play has a value, and that creators should never have to pay [for their music to be promoted by Apple].”

The letter also adds that 52 per cent of subscription revenue they pay to record labels. While it’s unclear just how many people are actually subscribed to Apple Music, they last confirmed their subscription base back in 2019 when it was 60million users. It’s now estimated that the number has risen to around the 72million mark.

Last month, Spotify launched a new website, Loud & Clear, which aims to provide greater transparency regarding the payments artists receive from the streaming service. 

Their move came following protests staged outside of Spotify offices globally, with artists and music lovers alike joining to demand ‘Justice At Spotify’. 

In a statement regarding the website launch, Spotify announced: “Artists deserve clarity about the economics of music streaming. This site aims to increase transparency by sharing new data on the global streaming economy and breaking down the royalty system, the players, and the process.”

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