Subscription music seeing slow adoption in China

China Tencent subscription surveyChina has long been a puzzle for the music industry, especially with recent developments in streaming and subscription platforms. A survey by Tencent Penguin Intelligence found that only about 10% of respondents were subscribed to a music service. Album purchases were even less common, with 5.4% buying CDs or records and 5% buying digital downloads.

When asked why they didn’t pay for digital music services, 59.3% said the reason was availability of free online music services. For 27%, there aren’t enough benefits from paid tiers, and 13.7% deemed it too expensive.

Tencent’s QQ Music is one of the most popular music options in China, thanks to its free music platform. Some international services with paid tiers have launched in China, but have adjusted their pricing schemes to reflect the low adoption of paid music. For instance, Apple Music is available, but at a lower price of $1.50 a month.

Anna Washenko