Streaming Service Shakeups

While album sales continue to drop, music streaming is only growing. Millennials and teens are fuelling the growth of existing services that provide them the curated and varied music collections they want, when they want them, and soon there will be even more competitors vying for their attention.

Millennials are at the forefront of the mobile revolution, and it’s that revolution that has fuelled the biggest shift in music consumption: streaming. At this point, streaming is not news, but the industry continues to grow. On demand streaming was up 54% in 2014, while album sales continued to decline. A 2014 Ypulse monthly survey found that 69% of 13-32-year-olds say they use Pandora, 40% say they use Spotify, and 20% use iHeartRadio. For Millennials, who want to listen to whatever music they want, wherever they are, without the burden of ownership, streaming is the solution to their music needs. As was made clear at the Grammys this weekend, streaming is not the solution the music industry was hoping for. Streaming is disruptive. Issues with artist compensation and the perceived threat that streaming poses to album sales makes it a contentious space. But at the same time Millennials and teens continue to bolster the growth of streaming services, and our data indicates that many are using more than one streaming source. Just as the online video world is fragmenting as new players vie for young consumers’ attention, the streaming world is in for some shakeups this year. Major players and smaller innovators alike are jumping into the streaming game to challenge current favorites. Here are three that could heat up the competition for Millennials’ ears: 


77% of 13-32-year-olds tell us that they listen to music on YouTube, more than those who use Pandora or even iTunes, but YouTube…


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The Newsfeed

Quote of the Day:  Millennials have grown up in a world where consuming wine outdoors—or any location outside of the traditional table—is more acceptable than generations past.”—Kate McManus, VP of Marketing, Delicato Family Wines (Wine Spectator)

Young consumers are “killing the shopping spree.” Whether they’re signing up for the growing number of clothing subscription services (Rent the Runway, Le Tote, Urban Outfitters, etc.), shopping second-hand, or just culling their closets—young shoppers are quitting fast fashion in droves. Some are inspired by Marie Kondo’s joy-sparking brand of minimalism, while others want to help the environment—and still others are just seeking a wide range of things to wear at a lower price. (Vice)

Airbnb is launching “adventures” for experience-seeking young travelers. The site that started with accommodations and moved into one-off “experiences” (like dinner parties) now offers multi-day excursions, complete with guides, gear, meals, and accommodations. The platform already features over 200 trips in 40 countries, including a tiger-tracking expedition in Kenya and a trek through the canyons of Oman. (Fast Company)

Tyson Foods is taking on the fake meat market with plant-based nuggets. The pea protein nuggets are the first in a line of “Raised & Rooted” products from Tyson Foods. The brand's CEO explains they’re catering to the “growing number of people open to flexible diets that include both meat and plant-based protein”—aka young flexitarians, not full-time vegans. But can a company known for its meat sell the idea that “this [trend] is about ‘and’—not ‘or’”? (The Verge)

Snapchatters can shop Levi’s new Pride Month jacket via selfie filter. The Shoppable feature is first enabled by scanning a QR code found at select stores or by getting a special Snapcode from a friend. Then, users can try on the special-edition trucker jacket via augmented reality, customizing it with one of two washes and a selection of six pins and patches. Once they complete the look, users can purchase the Pride Month Jacket—without ever leaving the app. (SJ)

Amazon’s new Echo Dot Kids Edition revamps the original. The new smart speakertakes many cues from the adult version’s second generation (it’s louder and rounder) but adds special features just for kids that go beyond a rainbow-striped color scheme. The device will come with a year of FreeTime Unlimited, a subscription service that includes popular Alexa skills like Pinkfong’s Baby Shark Adventures, as well as an enhanced parental control suite to address growing privacy concerns. (VarietyCNET)

Quote of the Day: “Young people still have an incredible interest in the Olympic Games…But the way they are consuming the Olympic Games—the type of content they are watching and the ways and the platforms on which they are watching—are fundamentally changing.”—Kit McConnell, Sports Director, International Olympic Committee (Bloomberg)

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