Streaming platforms are big business, which is probably one of the main reasons they are not so open to revealing their royalty payout schemes.
So far, only Apple has come out recently with more detailed information, stating that “its average per-play rate is $0.01, which means that each stream is counted as one cent towards the payout for the publisher holding the rights to the material.” Basically, 100 plays on Apple will earn an artist $1.
Data platform giants Statista recently tried to collect more information from various sources about streaming royalties. They note that Apple’s payout is a comparatively low rate, but it is still actually the highest payout among the streaming giants.
According to the information they collected, “Amazon comes in second with roughly $0.005 per Stream, which equates to about 200 plays for earnings of $1 on the platform. The market leader Spotify ranks third with a per-play rate of roughly $0.0032 and an average of 312 plays needed to earn $1.”
As Statista notes, while this rate can be seen only slightly below average in comparison, the Swedish music streaming service boasts almost triple the amount of paying subscribers as each of its direct competitors.
“While payout mechanics and models may still require improvement, music streaming has become the most important revenue source in the recorded music segment. In 2020, 62.1 percent of earnings came from streaming services, with physical records and downloads making up for 19.5 percent and 5.8 percent, respectively.”