Brief news items and worthy reads from around the web:
Apple Music should have free access: Plain-speaking pundit Bob Lefsetz notes research from Cowen indicating that Apple Music has a churn rate (subscribers leaving the service at the end of free trials) of 6.4%, which Cowen says is three times higher than Spotify’s churn rate. Lefsetz prescribes a business strategy which worked for Spotify when it launched in the U.S. in 2011 — the free-listening tier which gets users hooked on the music subscription experience, and the Spotify app. With Apple Music (as with Rhapsody/Napster, which has been operating since 2001), it’s all or nothing, subscribe or out after a free trial period. Before that recommendation, the article dishes out an excoriating analysis of Apple Music’s mistakes, in Lefsetz’s view.
Should singles charts count radio play? Chris Price, head of music for Radio 1 and Radio1Xtra, gave an interview with NME about the status of the UK singles charts. He voiced concern that streaming and playlists are skewing the chart counts and are contributing to the top tunes staying consistent from week to week. “Either we should discount curated playlist streams from the chart, or we should include radio airplay,” Price said. “Radio can play a part in keeping things fresh.”