Music Info: This Is What Music Streaming Platforms Pay Per Stream

One of the greatest problems plaguing the industry is the fact that musicians really don’t know how streaming works and how they actually get paid when fans stream their songs. Many people are of the opinion that one stream equals one dollar, so if one has say, 10,000 views on YouTube, Spotify or Apple Music, the artist automatically thinks he/she has $10k dollars in revenue just waiting to be collected. But this is actually not the case, in fact, YouTube and Spotify have one of the worst payout rates amongst streaming platforms and the lack of this knowledge has caused many artists to accuse digital distribution companies of scamming them out of their hard-earned money, which they have actually not earned.

So to avoid such problems in future as much as possible, below you will find the actual rates music streaming platforms pay per stream (from the highest to the lowest). So you can calculate it and know how much you actually earned.

Note; the info below only applies to streaming services with reported US market share amounts.

Microsoft’s Groove Music.

Although they announced late last year that they are set to quit the music streaming business because few users used the service and the company just couldn’t compete against the fierce market, Groove Music actually had the best payout, paying N9.83 ($0.02730) per play.


Napster (listed as Rhapsody) pays N6.06 ($0.01682) per play.  It had a 1.75% market share.


Jay-Z’s streaming service is still on the come up in the game, but the rapper’s TIDAL pays N4.62 ($0.01284) per stream.  It had a 1.76% market share in the US.

Apple Music.

Unlike rival streaming music platform Spotify, Apple Music doesn’t have a free tier. That partly explains why it offers a significantly higher per-play rate (Apple also voluntarily offered elevated payouts for mechanical publishing).

Apple Music pays N2.82 ($0.00783).



Although Amazon is in a world of its own, even though it doesn’t match up to the giant’s Apple Music and Spotify, the streaming platform is doing well with well over 16 million active subscribers. Amazon pays N2.6 ($0.0074) per play.


French-based streaming music service Deezer pays a reported N2.24 ($0.00624) per stream. The platform has a 3.24% market share in the US.

Google Play

Right behind Deezer, Google Play pays N2.2 ($0.00611) per stream.  It has a 4% market share in the States.


Number 1 streaming platform Spotify with over 80 million active subscribers are actually one of the worst when it comes to payouts. Spotify pays a devastating N1.43 ($0.00397) per stream.


Pandora Radio pays a sad N0.48 ($0.00134) per stream.



Video and audio streaming giants YouTube are number one on people’s minds when it comes to getting their contents seen by many, but the Google-owned company are the worst when it comes to paying revenue, and have been for the past couple of years. YouTube pays a paltry N0.27 ($0.00074) per stream.

All figures were gotten from Trichordist.

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