Nielsen recently presented a white paper study of streaming audio usage rates in several European countries and the USA. The study shows that streaming audio usage is growing at different rates in France, Spain, the UK, Germany, Italy and the US. Licensing issues and other factors such as awareness and understanding of streaming audio were some reasons for the discrepancies.
The USA has the widest offering of streaming audio services of all the countries. In the US, Nielsen watched behavior with an extensive list of sites – Pandora, Last.fm, Rhapsody, Jango, Napster, Project Playlist, Slacker, Mog, ReverbNation, Scour, TuneGenie, AudioRealm, iHeartRadio, Goom Radio, Mixcloud, Blip.fm and LiveMixtapes.com and notes that Pandora is undisputedly the dominant streaming service in the States. Streaming music audio services’ active reach in the USA was 10.2%. The services reach mainly younger consumers with the largest group of consumers females 18-24 at 18% reach in that demographic. Nielsen also notes that overall streaming audio is more popular with women than men.
That’s the case in Spain as well where streaming audio services Myspace.com, Los40.com, Last.fm, Rockola.fm, Yes.fm, Vagos.fm, and Spotify reach 18% of the population, 31% of 18-34 year olds and more women than men.
The French streaming audio music scene is dominated by Deezer, MusicMe, Last.fm and Spotify, reaching more women than men in a similar demographic spread. Average time spent listening in France is lower than in the UK or Spain, according to the study.
For the purpose of the study, Nielsen identified popular services in each country, as noted above. For the UK, they looked at We7, Spotify and Last.fm. Active reach was just 5.2%, much lower than the other countries in the study, but 18-24 year olds are still streaming lots – the reach in that demographic is 21%.
German consumers buck all the trends. More men than women are streaming, and while the reach of streaming audio is 5.5%, there’s little difference between that share and the 18-34 demographic – just 8.3% of men and 6% of women 18-34 are using tape.tv, Last.fm and Simfy.