Other sources confirm that ByteDance, the company that owns TikTok, is developing a paid music streaming service, according to Bloomberg . There was talk that ByteDance developed an application to transmit such music in early April. At that time, the sources told the South China Morning Post that the company planned to launch the service "soon" and that more than 100 people were working on it.
Rumor has it that the ByteDance service will be launched this fall with a focus on emerging markets. The exact territories have no name, but Bloomberg says the company will target "the most poorer countries where paid music services have not yet attracted large audiences."
There is not much information yet about the application, except that it will offer a catalog of songs and videos on demand, it will have free and paid levels and, according to the source of Bloomberg "it is not a Spotify clone or Apple Music. "ByteDance has acquired a huge user base in a short time, thanks to smart acquisitions and the explosion of popularity of TikTok, and has been working on all kinds of new applications to find its next success, including a competitor. of work messages Slack called Lark and a clone of Snapchat called Duoshan, but a music streaming service could be a more direct way to convert a part of the TikTok audience into paid subscribers.
ByteDance will need these clients since, reportedly, TikTok is still not profitable despite its popularity ularity, according to Billboard . And getting people to pay for the transmission of music in emerging markets is a big question. In India, less than one percent of music streaming subscribers pay for a subscription and about 14 percent have an included subscription (like Amazon Prime, or through a mobile contract).
But it seems that ByteDance sees the opportunity in India as the first application market, since it has supposedly obtained the rights of two of India's largest brands: T-Series (which recently became the YouTube's largest channel) and Times Music. And the new negotiations for licensing agreements with the world's largest music groups, Sony, Universal and Warner, are currently underway. An industry source tells The Verge that TikTok relies on the old license agreements it acquired through the purchase of musical.ly. Originally, these offers were awarded at much cheaper rates for musical.ly in 2016, since at that time it was still considered a new company. Now as TikTok, the application has over a billion downloads, and was the fourth application without download of the game for 2018, surpassed only by WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger and Facebook.
ByteDance could take the application to a country like India without waiting for the catalogs of the main labels, but that is very unlikely. You already have to renegotiate the license agreements with the major ones for TikTok itself. And Bloomberg says that licensing agreements for this new payment service are contingent upon reaching an agreement on those catalogs for TikTok. Not including them in the launch could give those labels a bad taste in the mouth about the negotiations in progress. In addition, the talk about ByteDance considering an initial public offering this year puts additional pressure on the company to have all of its music rights in place. The industry source tells The Verge that it is now about moving ByteDance from a startup license to a commercial license, which probably means a significant increase in the amount the company pays for using music.
The new ByteDance application According to reports, it will arrive this fall.