Prime Music is Amazon’s new music streaming service available on Kindle devices, iOS, Android, PC and Mac. Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos usually has a big-picture agenda for releasing products and services, so we’ll have to wait and see how Prime Music fits into the Amazon puzzle.
For now, Prime Music is not a very compelling proposition compared to Spotify, Beats Music, Pandora etc. Two reasons:
— New music is not available until six months after its release.
— Prime Music does not include most music (1 of the 3 major labels, Universal Music Group, has not signed a streaming deal with Amazon. Sony Music Entertainment and the Warner Music Group are the two labels that have signed).
The financial agreements are said to be unconventional also. Instead of having a per-play payment rate, Amazon reportedly pays a pro-rated share from a pool of money. In other words, no matter how many Amazon subscribers or plays a song generates, payments would be capped. Billboard reports on the financials in more depth here.
Good for Amazon? Probably.
Good for music fans and artists or rights holders who receive payments from music? Today, I don’t think so.
Currently, Prime Music is an added service for Amazon Prime customers. Music analyst and fan Bob Lefsetz weighs in on his unfavorable view of Prime Music concluding:
Making music an add-on devalues it. Music is not the glass you get for filling up at the gas station, it’s the petrol itself, the main driver, the expensive elixir, the one thing you cannot motor without!