J.D. Power tackles customer satisfaction in streaming

J.D. Power conducted its first customer satisfaction survey for paid music streaming services. The results showed generally close rankings, but it did have some notable exclusions.

Apple Music topped the list with a score of 834 out of 1,000. The next tier was a close cluster with Rhapsody at 826, Pandora at 825, and Spotify at 824. TuneIn came in at 820, then Amazon Prime Music and Google Play Music tied at the bottom with 818.

The participants in this survey are “customers who have used a subscription-based streaming music service within the past six months,” but that’s a confusing definition given the companies listed. Tidal, Deezer, SoundCloud, and YouTube Red are not included, but are all subscription platforms. TuneIn is listed, but Pandora is not, even though both offer lean-back listening with a premium option that isn’t quite full on-demand. And totally free non-interactive platforms such as iHeartRadio have been omitted from the entire assessment.

Despite the confusing choices in which platforms to cover, the results did include some useful insights into user habits. Overall satisfaction was highest among fully engaged listeners, who represent 29% of the participants and posted a score of 860. A sizable 44% share are passive listeners, who neither share their own content from the service not consumer other users’ content. The passive group had the lowest satisfaction rate at 801.

Paid music services also generated higher scores than their free counterparts. Subscribers had an average gap of 19 points above the free listeners, although customer service had a 68-point difference and communication had a 45-point gap.


Credit: J.D. Power

Anna Washenko


  1. Not an expert but, thinking that Amazon may gain some bigger numbers in the future with the recent launch of Amazon Music Unlimited. Just saying.

  2. “Subscribers had an average gap of 19 points above the free listeners”

    If the survey averaged Spotify’s free and paid user responses, then this would indicate that Spotify’s paid subscribers actually ranked it slightly higher than Apple’s paid subscribers?

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