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Making a Music Streaming App: Going Through All the Essentials


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Our music perception and its importance significantly raised recently. And music streaming services contributed to this a lot.

All ever-known music pieces became much more accessible. You can listen to anything comfortably and receive a lot of joy.

Creating a service like this is very convenient and may lead to great success. This post will help you learn about all essentials and possible challenges during music streaming app development.

Basics About Streaming Services Industry

The industry’s popularity is based on consumers’ primary comfort. You no longer have to download and pay for every song or album. Instead, you can listen to anything you like for a comparatively low price.

Such personalized services can develop a unique playlist for each user.

For example, Spotify has the best machine-learning algorithms, which can impress some users with its accuracy. It can provide you with a playlist of songs you’d most likely appreciate by analyzing tons of similar compositions.

Thanks to such exciting features, Spotify takes over 36% of the music streaming audience.

Other popular services like Apple Music and YouTube Music also have authentication features.

Besides high-quality records, Apple Music allows its users to connect and listen to local radio.

While YouTube Music itself is an extended feature of YouTube, here is gathered all songs, albums, and video clips uploaded by artists on YouTube. YouTube Music has a separate app.

Anyway, there is a huge variety of successful options. But let’s see how to create your own app.

Strategy and Hints to Make a Music Streaming App

To exclude confusion, let’s learn some fundamental aspects for a smoother development of such solutions.

Form an Experienced Team

It’ll require a lot of effort. Experienced specialists will help you to delegate multiple tasks and make the process easier.

Outsourcing app development is a convenient way to find a well-qualified team. This will help significantly reduce final costs and increase the number of developers with solid skill sets. 

Usually, offshore outsourcing companies provide the latest technology stack.

Classification of Music Services

There are several types of streaming services, and some functionalities may differ:

  • You can develop a server-based music library, allowing customers to access it under your rules( for free or by paid subscription). 
  • Another type allows users to store their audio. Users also can have access anytime they want and stream it on various platforms. 
  • The final type involves adding radio stations into an app. Specific themes classify radio stations, and the range is also quite broad. 

Anyway, we will overview the building process of server library service.

Proper Licensing

Here music app development shares similarities with live-streaming app development, as direct work with copyright and intellectual property is applied in both cases.

You must care for streaming content according to all rights and guidelines as an owner. Therefore, having Public Performance Rights is crucial. However, skipping this step is not recommended to avoid gaining huge penalties.

In the US, you can negotiate with BMI or ASCAP. However, in Europe, contact SESAC.

What About Data Storage?

Two ways to store your data exist. 

You can create your storage space using a back-end server with the help of your developers.

But an option of streaming from completed SoundCloud or Spotify catalogs is still available.

Decide What Platform To Use

It is recommended to engage both (iOS and Android apps) to obtain more users and remain competitive.

But if you still wait to be ready to spread on two platforms but want to stay highly demanded – examine the popularity of both among your potential users.

MVP Version

A Minimal Viable Product(MVP) is a brilliant way to introduce your product to an audience quickly. It’s a version of the software with only essential features to understand its basic capabilities and start obtaining users.

This method will show the user’s general interest and help develop the first app version on a required budget.

Must-Have Features 

As we learned earlier, the MVP contains the minimum to make an app usable. Here are some of these:

  • Registration. It’s the primary aspect of every application. Make this fast and easy. You can implement signup via email, phone numbers, or social networks. Adding the “Forgot your password?” feature will help attach more users;
  • Player. Besides basics like ‘play and ’pause’ buttons, let users create their playlists, mark ‘favorites’ among creators, etc.
  • Search. It’s a tool to find artists, albums, etc. It’s good to include suggestions to simplify the user’s experience;
  • Settings. Insert an ability to set custom audio or personal settings;
  • My playlists/My Music. Users can view their saved tracks, formed playlists, or albums here. Also, it is convenient to let consumers share songs over social media.

Of course, moderate your product and develop its design. 

It’s vital to include an administration panel. One for both apps will be enough to manage subscriptions and more.

As for design, take advantage of UI/UX. Keep being simple and bright here as well.

Developers Team and Technologies Stack

As mentioned, implementing your music streaming app idea without a professional team is hard. See the list of all the members below:

  • Project manager
  • Business analyst
  • Ui/UX designer
  • Developers for iOS, Android, or both
  • Back-end developers
  • QA engineer

Analyzing competitors’ experience to determine essential tools makes sense.

Spotify uses Python and Java as a programming code cortex, Cassandra and PostgreSQL as a database, Nginx server, Google BigQuery, and Amazon S3 as cloud storage.

Total Cost of Developing Music Service

We’ve established the key factors. And still, it’s essential to realize that the cost of MVP is significantly lower than the development of a full-fledged version.

The cost to build a music streaming platform, including all previously listed experts’ work processes, varies from $88,250 to $150,850. But the price may differ depending on the type of cooperation, the complexity of the app design, and more.

Monetization of a Music Streaming Service

Finally, how to monetize your application correctly? 

Most services use three major monetization models: Freemium, Advertisement, and Subscription. 

  • Freemium means you give users access to a certain amount of functionality for free but offer to receive more by getting a subscription.
  • Offering a subscription model implies that users follow different types of payments (for a month or a year) for unlimited listening.
  • YouTube Music employs the advertisement model the most. It plays ads before listening to tracks (in the free version). 

However, Spotify may be considered a marketplace for creators. It presents the artist’s music to people who prefer a similar genre.

Summing Up

The music services industry is very prospective. Yes, it takes some time to create it and start having a considerable profit. However, this direction will be relevant for a long time.

So, feel free to take on this venture, and hopefully, this post will help you in further creation.

Author bio
Yuliya Melnik is a technical writer at Cleveroad. She is passionate about innovative technologies that make the world a better place and loves creating content that evokes vivid emotions.

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