Alarm Bells must be ringing at 1 Infinite Loop Drive at Cupertino, California blaring “Red Alert” as I type this.
Reason being is that suddenly, there has been a drop in Music downloads from Apple iTunes, as now, more than ever, Americans have rediscovered Radio. Or to be more precise, Streaming Radio as explained in The Music Industry and the Cloud – Streaming Radio Nirvana.
To this end, Apple is making a bold decision that mimics the decision taken by Blackberry with regards to BBM (BlackBerry Messenger) as I’d pointed out in Free Blackberry Messenger App coming to Android and iOS; they are planning to let Apple iTunes Radio free as a standalone App on Apple iOS when they roll out Apple iOS 8. They also plans to make Apple iTunes Radio a service that can be downloaded on any smartphone, including Google Android smartphones.
Billboard Magazine has highly placed sources citing Apple is currently in negotiations with major Music labels to get them onboard Apple iTunes Radio, as they’re possibly planning to launch Apple iTunes Radio as a standalone App around the same time as Apple iOS 8.
According to Nielsen, Apple iTunes, their main Cash Cow powered by Apple iOS, is slowly bleeding to death, as downloading songs is no longer considered cool; it’s the instantness of Listening to live Streaming Simulcasts that enthralls this 21st Century Generation of Millennials (age 18 to 28).
To wit, the Nielsen stats on the Fate of Apple iTunes aren’t looking so rosy:
13% decline in Apple iTunes downloads compared to the week of March 9, 2014
11% decline in MP3 Sales compared to the same period in 2013
A recent report by the RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America) paints a clearer picture of the overall Streaming v Downloading scene and it’s clearly a win for Streaming, according to the RIAA Stats:
US$1.4 billion in revenue made from subscriptions, advertising, and licensing revenues in the US in 2013
39% increase in revenue made from subscriptions, advertising, and licensing revenues in the US over the same period in 2012
US$2.9 billion in revenue from downloading in 2013, a decline from revenues in 2012
3.2% decline in downloading in 2013 compared to 2012
Streaming’s Perfect Storm – Small Internal Memories and SD Cards below 500GB, Faster 3G/4G LTE
The Apple iPods of yesteryear are gone replaced by smartphones and Tablets with 3G/4G LTE (Long Term Evolution) plans that are backed with small Internal Memory as well as SD Cards with 64GB max storage space. Consequently, until 500 GB sized SD Card and SSD (Solid State Drive) Internal Storage equivalent to their PC and Laptop counterparts come on stream that allow for only minimal downloading of Music and videos.
With memory prices being expensive, that won’t be anytime soon, creating a sort-of in-between period where the climate is just right for Streaming Services to look suddenly like the Next Big Thing!
All this combines to create the Perfect Storm for streaming of not only Music but Movies and Music Videos anywhere you can pick up a 3G/4G LTE or Wi-Fi Signal more attractive. Throw in free Cloud Storage that offer Streaming of their content like Pandora, Spotify, YouTube and Amazon Cloud Drive as describe in Why Amazon Cloud Drive, the DropBox Clone, is Legal and Streaming Music is beginning to look more attractive all the time.
Even creating your own personal Cloud using Dropbox or Google Drive is looking possible, now that Dropbox and Google Drive for smartphones and Tablets is available. Just make sure you have a lot of new friends to refer to and you basically can watch your Dropbox Cloud blossom.
Apple iTunes Radio is inevitable as Streaming Takes Flight – Samsung Milk is their only problem
All of this makes sense to Astrology and Astronomy buffs like myself, as the number 8 in Numerology and Mystical Gematria symbolizes Orpheus; i.e. a new Birth that portends someone with great potential. Hence all persons born on August, the 8th month of the year and the most common month for persons to be born around the world are imbued with the potential, based on the alignment of the stars on that month, to do great things with their lives.
Apple iTunes Radio launched on the 8th versions of Apple iOS, a milestone in itself, will mark Apple’s final transition away from the old downloading Apple iTunes model to the newer on-demand Streaming Model of Apple iTunes Radio. A Perfect Storm indeed that’ll return Apple’s Musical Cash Cow back to profitability….or at least until 500GB Internal Storage become heap enough to be commonplace on smartphones and Tablets!
So the summer is looking good for Millennials (age 18 to 28). Not only will there be free International Calling on smartphones and Tablets, but Apple iTunes will also be a part of that mix as well with free, universally available on any smartphones, just like BBM.
Otherwise, Apple iTunes, their main Cash Cow, may eventually run aground even as Samsung’s Milk begins to feed the masses with free Music
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