Music Streaming Services: Royalty Payouts in 2019


Are you currently an independent artist trying to make it big? Or maybe it’s your new year’s resolution to publish your first song. Digital Music News compiled a list of all the streaming services and their payouts for 2019. Check it out. 

1. Napster takes the lead, at least in terms of payouts. The service pays on average of $0.019 per stream. This means that to meet the monthly US minimum wage of $1,472, an artist would need a total of 77,474 plays per month on Napster.

2. TIDAL, the music streaming brainchild of Jay-Z, takes the second spot in terms of payouts. While the company reportedly loses $6.67 per user and had an annual loss of $28 million, they are at least friendly to artists, paying out $0.0125 per stream. This means that artists on TIDAL would need 117,760 total plays to earn $1,472.

3. Apple Music, in an effort to win over artists from its nemesis Spotify, takes on third place, paying $0.00735 per stream. This means that an artist on Apple Music would need around 200,272 streams to earn $1,472.

4. Google Play Music, falls slightly behind Apple at $0.00676 per stream, meaning artists would need 217,752 streams to make the US monthly minimum wage.

5. Deezer, the French-based streaming service that does not have much presence in the US mainstream market, takes fifth place right behind Google at $0.0064. This amounts to 230,000 total plays to make $1,472.

6. Spotify, historically one of the worst services in terms of payouts, has been raising their royalties recently. They currently pay around $0.00437 per play, meaning an artist needs 336,842 plays to make $1,472. Spotify has been losing an average of $2.68 per user, leading to losing over $584 million so far this year.

7. Amazon, which keeps its metrics closely guarded, reportedly pays around $0.00402 per play, which amounts to 366,169 total streams to make the US monthly minimum wage.

8. Pandora, the struggling streaming service that was purchased by by SiriusXM in September for $3.5 billion, has a dismal payout of $0.00133 per stream. This totals to around 1,106,767 plays in order to earn $1,472. The service reportedly losses around $3.09 per user.

9. Youtube comes in dead last of the platforms, paying artists almost half of Pandora at $0.00069 per play. This means that an artist would need roughly 2,133,333 total plays in order to earn $1,472.

So what did we learn from all this? It’s hard to make a living as an independent artist, but if you still plan on doing it, then don’t depend solely on Youtube.

H/T: Digital Music News