“Apple gloated a little Monday when it announced iTunes Radio had notched more than 11 million unique listeners in the first five days since its September 18 launch on iOS 7 and the desktop iTunes software,” Joan E. Solsman reports for CNET. “That figure is nearly four times the number of unique listeners that Rhapsody — the subscription-based music service that pioneered streaming when launched in 2001 — had in July, according to ComScore. Rhapsody’s unique listeners numbered just 2.89 million in that month. So much for first-mover advantage.”
“This pace of iTunes Radio listener growth — 11 million in five days — also puts it on track to surpass the current leader of Internet radio in less than 30 days,” Solsman reports. “Pandora, by far the biggest streaming radio service, had 64.9 million unique listeners in July, compared with 20.2 million for No. 2 Spotify, 14.4 million for iHeartRadio, and 5.4 million for Slacker. If Apple can keep up its momentum, it will have 66 million unique listeners in 30 days post-launch.”
MacDailyNews Take: One issue with Solsman’s math: She’s not comparing like numbers. The Pandora Radio subscriber number counts the U.S., Australia, and New Zealand, all three countries in which Pandora is available. Apple’s iTunes Radio is U.S.-only for the time being. As iTunes Radio continues its roll out in the U.S. with iOS 7 adoption and then rolls out to Australia, New Zealand, and beyond, Pandora will quickly become a tiny dot in Apple’s rearview mirror.
Solsman reports, “‘While more high quality digital radio players may eat into terrestrial radio listening, given the quality of the iTunes Radio experience, we have a hard time believing it will not eat into Pandora’s market share of active monthly users and time spent listening,’ BTIG Research analyst Rich Greenfield wrote in a note last week.”
Read more in the full article here.
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