TikTok launches subscription-based music streaming service in Brazil and Indonesia

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Today, TikTok has announced the inauguration of “TikTok Music”, a brand-new music streaming service available only via subscription in Brazil and Indonesia. This new initiative allows users to synchronize their existing TikTok accounts to TikTok Music and enjoy an array of features such as listening to, downloading, and sharing music. The platform includes a broad catalogue from major record companies, including Sony Music, Warner Music Group, and Universal Music Group.

A unique approach to music streaming

The subscription-based TikTok Music offers a unique blend of features. It allows users to listen to full versions of viral TikTok songs, and provides personalised music recommendations. With real-time lyrics access, collaborative playlist creation, music library import capabilities and lyrics-based song search, the service promises a comprehensive user experience. The platform even includes a Shazam-like functionality, which can identify a song currently being played.

Drawing parallels with Spotify Premium, TikTok Music allows users to download songs for offline listening, alongside a range of social features. TikTok highlights that users can express themselves through comments and engage with other music enthusiasts.

However, the company remained tight-lipped on plans to launch the service in the United States. A spokesperson stated, “We are excited about the opportunities for TikTok Music, for music fans, artists and the industry, but we don’t have any more news to share on future plans.”

TikTok music replacing Resso

The new service is set to replace ByteDance’s existing streaming platform, Resso, in Brazil and Indonesia from September 5. Although Resso operates in India, there has been no word on whether TikTok Music will make its debut in the country.

Affordable subscriptions

A TikTok Music subscription costs $3.49 a month in Brazil, and $3.25 for iOS users in Indonesia. Android users in Indonesia can avail of a lower price of $2.96 per month for the first year, which will increase to $3.25 afterwards. Unlike many competitors, TikTok Music does not offer a free membership option, but there is a one-month free trial available.

Ole Obermann, the global head of Music Business Development at TikTok, stated, “We are pleased to introduce TikTok Music, a new kind of service that combines the power of music discovery on TikTok with a best-in-class streaming service. TikTok Music will make it easy for people in Indonesia and Brazil to save, download and share their favourite viral tracks from TikTok.”

A game-changer for music streaming?

This development does not come as a surprise, particularly since ByteDance, TikTok’s parent company, filed a trademark application with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in May 2022 for a service termed “TikTok Music”.

TikTok’s new venture places it in direct competition with industry giants such as Spotify, Amazon and Apple. While these services offer ad-supported free memberships, TikTok will need to differentiate itself, offering an experience that entices users to switch from these established platforms.

Despite the fact that the announcement did not mention podcast and radio content, ByteDance’s trademark application hinted that the service might include such features. The addition of podcasts and radio content would position TikTok Music as a formidable competitor to Apple Music and Spotify.

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