Spotify says it has between 73 million and 76 million paying subscribers, around twice what Apple Music currently has. This year, Spotify plans for that number to grow to between 92 million and 96 million premium users.
According to Cupertino’s most recent figures, Apple Music has signed up 38 million users who pay a monthly subscription.
In total monthly active users, Spotify currently has between 168 million and 171 million, which includes those who use the ad-supported free service. This represents an increase from the 157 million who used Spotify at the end of 2017.
Spotify vs. Apple Music
However, while those figures make Spotify appear far ahead of Apple, it’s worth noting a couple of points. For one thing, Spotify has been around significantly longer than Apple Music, giving it a lot longer to rack up users. Secondly, Spotify’s description of “premium subscribers” may well differ from Apple’s.
In a press release about its latest figures, Spotify notes that “premium subscribers” is a term used to refer to those who have:
“… completed registration with Spotify and have activated a payment method for a premium service. Our Premium Subscribers include all registered accounts in our Family Plan. Our Family Plan consists of one primary subscriber and up to five additional sub-accounts, allowing up to six Premium Subscribers per Family Plan subscription. Premium Subscribers include subscribers who are within a grace period of up to 30 days after failing to pay their subscription fee.”
Thirdly, Spotify is still losing money. Despite forecasting revenues of 4.9 billion to 5.3 billion euros (between $6 billion and $6.6 billion) for 2018, the company will still post operating losses of $286 million to $410 million for the year. This includes up to $50 million in costs associated with Spotify’s stock market listing. Growth is also down to 20 percent to 30 percent from the 39 percent growth Spotify recorded last year.
One recent report suggested that Apple is set to overtake Spotify for paid subscribers in the U.S. this summer.
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