More than 25% of iTunes users want Apple to go to the cloud

Posted:
in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited January 2014
More than a quarter of iTunes users would like to see Apple offer a free, Internet-based cloud streaming media solution, while some said they would be willing to pay for such a feature.



The new iTunes Usage Report conducted by NPD Group asked users of iTunes, as well as iPods and iPhones, to react to various music subscription models. The study found that between 7 million and 8 million iTunes users in the U.S. would have a strong interest in a paid subscription option, for about $10 a month. That would be out of an estimated 50 million iTunes users in the U>S.



For that price, consumers would like to have access to either streaming music, or access their personal music libraries on multiple devices.



If the price were free, and granted users access to stream content they had already purchased, the number of users interested is even higher. The study found that between 13 million and 15 million said they would use that functionality.



"After the service's launch, user numbers could conceivably rise substantially, as they upgrade to newer connected devices and actually experience the benefits of cloud-based music," Russ Crupnick, vice president and senior entertainment analyst for NPD Group, said. "If the consumers who indicated strong interest in a paid subscription actually adopted one of those services at $10 per month, the market opportunity is close to $1 billion in the first year, which is roughly two-thirds the revenue garnered by the current pay-per download model.



The study was based on an online panel of respondents aged 13 and older which completed 2,862 surveys in May 2010. Each respondent indicated that they had used iTunes at least once in the last three months. NPD Group said that the study carries 95 percent confidence.



Rumors of an iTunes cloud service have persisted for some time, with indications that Apple has attempted to broker a deal with content providers to allow it to stream music to connected devices. Speculation grew after Apple, late last year, purchased streaming music service Lala for $85 million.



Recent reports, however, have indicated that such a service may not come to be any time soon, as Apple continues to negotiate with content providers, who have reportedly been unwilling to budge. Apple, thus far, has not been able to obtain the necessary licenses it would need for an "iTunes.com" service.



"We don't know yet what, if any, effect these services might have on the traditional pay-per-download music model, or whether consumers will ultimately spend more on digital music overall, if or when any of these options eventually rolls out, Crupnick said.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 29
    I would like to have Hulu on my iPad for free, but I don't think it's going to happen. Why would Apple spend the money to set up a server farm and give it away for free?



    Why does anyone who pays the Apple Tax to own Apple products expect anything from Apple to be free?
  • Reply 2 of 29
    aiaddictaiaddict Posts: 487member
    There have been music subscription services for years. Several are available on Apple products, none are doing very well.



    Why would I pay Apple to stream my iTunes purchases? Why would I pay them more than what Pandora charges super heavy users, or what it costs me to get OTA radio stations on my iDevice? Apple would have to offer something pretty special to get $10 per month.
  • Reply 3 of 29
    ghostface147ghostface147 Posts: 1,629member
    I have no interest in the cloud for iTunes. Nor anything for that matter. If they roll it out, it better be free.
  • Reply 4 of 29
    chris_cachris_ca Posts: 2,543member
    Quote:

    More 25% of iTunes users want Apple to go to the cloud



    More than 25% of iTunes users want Apple to go to the cloud



    Quote:

    More than a quarter of iTunes users would like to see Apple offer a free, Internet-based cloud streaming media solution,



    So the other 3/4 of iTunes users don't want a free, Internet-based cloud streaming media solution?
  • Reply 5 of 29
    anonymouseanonymouse Posts: 6,558member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Chris_CA View Post


    More than 25% of iTunes users want Apple to go to the cloud



    So the other 3/4 of iTunes users don't want a free, Internet-based cloud streaming media solution?



    Not surprising. The "cloud" is simply not as attractive to many people as the proponents believe it is.
  • Reply 6 of 29
    kellya74ukellya74u Posts: 171member


    deleted

  • Reply 7 of 29
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by kellya74u View Post


    Simplify Media was a free program that allowed you to stream your music & photos from your home computer. You had to pay $3.99 for the iPhone program to listen to that music or see the photos, a one time fee, to hear your multi-gigabyte library.



    Google recently bought Simplify Media to run it on the Android phones., which is business I guess. However, good old Google, killed the Simplify Media sservers, thus eliminating the Mac to iPhone streaming, turning their backs on all of their Mac customers.



    I understand healthy competition, but I felt this was immoral for Google to do that. If they truly cared about people, they could have let that service run to show their integrity, that they weren't focused on stabbing Apple in the back. For those who will get streaming service on the Androids, congratulations.....its comes with a price!



    I had Simplify Media. It was nice. It was a great solution to the storage problem on my first 4GB iPhone. Too bad they discontinued their app.
  • Reply 8 of 29
    daharderdaharder Posts: 1,580member
    Given Apple's recent 'reliability' track record... I'd Rather Not!
  • Reply 9 of 29
    galleygalley Posts: 971member
    I would only be interested if I could stream all of my 30,000 songs to my iPhone. Out of those 30,00, there are perhaps a total of five that were purchased from the iTunes Store; the rest are lossless. I don't need online backup of five songs.
  • Reply 10 of 29
    ktappektappe Posts: 758member
    Quote:

    a quarter of iTunes users would like to see Apple offer a free, Internet-based cloud streaming media solution



    And I want a pony but that doesn't mean I will get one or that it's a good idea (given that I live in a townhouse.) In this case Henry Ford was right; people often do not know what they really want and/or what is a good idea.
  • Reply 11 of 29
    -cj--cj- Posts: 58member
    I can only imagine the other 75% don't understand how convenient it is to have their entire library available anywhere, anytime.



    Lala was such a great service and while i didn't initially use it to discover new music, only stream my existing library when working out of the house, it became a great option for full length previews of songs which led to many iTunes purchases. Too bad the Lala app never got approved or adopted by Apple. By all beta user accounts, it was well done.



    I don't know about $10, but I'd pay $5 a month if it let me listen to full length versions of songs I haven't purchased at least once. Then give me the option to own it.



    I can't imagine Apple doesn't see the opportunity here. I believe the hold up is in the licensing agreements.
  • Reply 12 of 29
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post


    Not surprising. The "cloud" is simply not as attractive to many people as the proponents believe it is.



    Or, maybe more likely, the other 75% either can't figure out what that would mean (remember, most computer users are largely computer-illiterate) or just don't care one way or the other.
  • Reply 13 of 29
    justbobfjustbobf Posts: 261member
    I miss Lala. (10 cents to add the song to your playlist and listen to it all you want, or until bought by another company.)
  • Reply 14 of 29
    yodamacyodamac Posts: 58member
    Was this whole survey only about streaming music?



    iTunes is a lot more (TV, movies, podcasts...)



    Although I DO NOT want a subscription music service, I would love a TV/Movie subscription model that allows for rentals, and rent-to-own iTunes TV shows and Movies.



    I'm all for letting Apple store that massive "library" in the cloud for me - saves on Hard Drive expense.
  • Reply 15 of 29
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Chris_CA View Post


    More than 25% of iTunes users want Apple to go to the cloud





    So the other 3/4 of iTunes users don't want a free, Internet-based cloud streaming media solution?



    sensationalistic journalism at its best. it's one thing to be pro apple, and it's entirely another to be so obviously pro apple that you're making the other pro apple people gag. i'm gagging. this is as bad as betanews and their retarded staff waving pro microsoft flags. it's so bad on that site i actively avoid it because they went from news to VIEWPOINT i.e. opinion polls where it's just some wanna be tech tard spouting off about how much he knows proving only how much he doesnt.
  • Reply 16 of 29
    chris_cachris_ca Posts: 2,543member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post


    Not surprising. The "cloud" is simply not as attractive to many people as the proponents believe it is.



    Okay but I doubt iTunes would be "cloud only". It would be possible to keep on your computer/iPod without using the cloud.

    And more to the point I was getting at, they don't want Apple to do it or they would pay for it?

    More likely they simply don't care.

    AI sometimes is a bit loose with paraphrasing and sometimes it does not come across with the same meaning as the original.

    "According to NPD?s ?iTunes Usage Report,? more than a quarter of respondents expressed strong interest in a free cloud-based music option" (from http://musicindustryreport.org/?p=23696)

    does not mean

    "More than 25% of iTunes users want Apple to go to the cloud".
  • Reply 17 of 29
    chris_cachris_ca Posts: 2,543member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by justbobf View Post


    I miss Lala. (10 cents to add the song to your playlist and listen to it all you want, or until bought by another company.)



    and Apple was the other company that bought Lala.
  • Reply 18 of 29
    blah64blah64 Posts: 885member
    As others have aptly mentioned, this study shows that nearly 75% of those surveyed are JUST NOT INTERESTED.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    "If the consumers who indicated strong interest in a paid subscription actually adopted one of those services at $10 per month, the market opportunity is close to $1 billion in the first year, which is roughly two-thirds the revenue garnered by the current pay-per download model.



    So how much lost revenue would there be if 25% switched? You need to consider both sides of the equation, switchers don't bring new revenue. It's only if the difference is a (very) significant positive number that it would make financial sense. For these guys to throw around the "billion" number is just hype.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    If the price were free, and granted users access to stream content they had already purchased, the number of users interested is even higher. The study found that between 13 million and 15 million said they would use that functionality.



    Duh. Free service? The fact that the numbers are that low on a percentage basis for a free add-on service is kind of interesting.



    Now there may be other strategic factors to consider on both sides, but I don't think there's any huge news here in the fact that some minority of folks are interested in a cloud solution to replace the existing system.
  • Reply 19 of 29
    macslutmacslut Posts: 514member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by -cj- View Post


    I can only imagine the other 75% don't understand how convenient it is to have their entire library available anywhere, anytime.



    The problem comes with execution.



    I have a library that's over 500GB. It's all high bit rate...I used to dj etc...



    I have a 1TB hard drive in my MacBook Pro 13" and I take that with me just about everywhere. Prior to putting in the 1TB drive, I had a subset of my iTunes library that was between 50GB and 100GB with lots of playlists.



    You'd be surprised at how hard it is to navigate or work with a large library with lots of playlists via 3G on the iPhone. It doesn't work well at all. And neither does streaming.



    Throw in the problems most people have with firewalls and port routing and you'll see why Simplify Media was a much better demo than a product...<insert comment about how great it was here> yes, but there's a reason why it wasn't a successful product on its own. It, and the concept, certainly weren't Apple-level user experience.



    Throw into the mix that storage grows rapidly while our music libraries tend to max out over time, and you'll see that each year or so iPhones gain enough capacity to hold more and more of people's entire libraries. You'd have a hard time selling the ability to stream a iTunes library to someone who's library is under 32GB...and next year 64GB...and next year or so...



    So what it comes down to is this...



    Does a music subscription service make sense today when you can "rent your music" on the go...over wifi, over 3G, anytime, and anywhere?



    I don't think so. Not as an independent sustainable business model. In other words, even wirelessly today Napster, Rhapsody and all the others would still fail. People either want to own their music or have intelligent radio services (mostly on the free side) like Pandora.



    On the other hand, for Apple, it doesn't need to be a profit center. Apple wouldn't do this at a loss, but if it broke even, Apple could see this as a way to boost iPhone/iPod sales and further strengthen its position as a content distribution powerhouse.



    If Apple were to do this, I think it would be in a way that was much more Pandora-like than like Napster.
  • Reply 20 of 29
    magic_almagic_al Posts: 325member
    Why I don't care what a quarter of any population wants, iTunes users or otherwise: in the August 2010 issue of Vanity Fair, a poll done with CBS News shows 24 percent of Americans STILL think Barack Obama was born outside the U.S.



    People are dumb.
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