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DIGITAL MUSIC NEWS: Breaking: The Beatles Will Be Streaming by Christmas

DIGITAL MUSIC NEWS: Breaking: The Beatles Will Be Streaming by Christmas

One December 24th, you might be streaming the Beatles.  That’s according to a report from Billboard, which is pointing to Beatles availability on one or more streaming services by Christmas.  The move would end one of the biggest, high-profile holdouts from streaming music services like Spotify and Apple Music.

On the latter, there could be an exclusive in the cards for Apple and its just-launched Apple Music.  Indeed, Apple has a considerable war chest and is looking to capitalize on its early traction.  According to whisper numbers, Apple Music is already past 8 million paying subscribers and possibly approaching the 10 million-mark.  That is a number that is rapidly approaching Spotify’s 20-plus million tally.

 

apple_itunes_exclusive_2010

There’s also coniderable precedence for an Apple exclusive.  Steve Jobs was a die-hard Beatles fan, and the group finally arrived on the iTunes Store in 2010 after years of drawn-out, fruitless negotiations.  That worked out well, with Apple blasting the group’s presence through advertising and promotions, and sparking a big Beatles sales spike.

More recently, Apple scored an iTunes exclusive on the digital version of 1+, a just-released video compilation that follows the wildly-successful Beatles greatest hits package, 1.

Now, with downloads eroding and streaming surging, the timing could be right for a streaming debut.  Outside of signing exclusives and one-off bonus payments, streaming payouts are paltry compared to downloads, so it makes financial sense for groups like the Beatles to stay on the sidelines.

 

Beatles_Trends1

But it may not make sense from a legacy standpoint.  As time mercilessly marches on, groups like the Beatles face the risk of eroding interest as generations pass.  Indeed, a quick look at Google Trends shows a serious erosion already, with newer generations (and a newer generations of parents) caring less about some legendary band from the 60s.

But perhaps the greatest way to kill a legacy is to kill access to it.  Older people buys CDs and downloads; many younger people do not.  And the stark reality for the younger demographic is this: if the Beatles aren’t on streaming platforms, they might as well not exist.

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