After the rousing success of its video sharing cum social media app, TikTok, Chinese internet company ByteDance, the name behind the succesful app, is all set to launch its very own music streaming service that would take on the likes of Spotify, Apple Music and Tencent Music.
According to a report published in the Financial Times, the TikTok owner is in talks with some of the world's largest record companies including Universal Music, Sony Music and Warner Music for global licensing deals to include their popular music titles on its upcoming music streaming service.
The yet unnamed music subscription service will go head-to-head with the likes of Spotify, Apple Music, Tencent and YouTube Music in the music streaming market and as per the report, could launch as soon as next month. Furthermore, the report citing people familiar with the matter states that ByteDance is looking to launch the music streaming service in emerging markets such as India, Indonesia and Brazil (where it's other app TikTok is quite popular) before launching it in markets such as the US.
The report also suggests the Chinese company aims to differentiate itself from its rivals by focusing on user-generated content - a strategy that was instrumental in making TikTok one of the world's most popular social media platforms. The upcoming app, in addition to on-demand music, will allow users to search from a library of short video clips and also post and watch short video clips and sync to songs just as they listen, just like how they would on TikTok.
The subscription charges are not yet unconfirmed, although it is expected to cost less than $10 a month, which is what Spotify, Apple Music and others charge their subscribers in the US. And while paying for music subscriptions if common in the US and parts of Europe, it isn't the same case in Asia, which could pose a challenge to ByteDance.
However, music executives are keen to make money on the popularity of the as-yet-free TikTok and they see ByteDance's new app as a welcome addition to the existing music streaming market.
Meanwhile, ByteDance has come under fire from Washington lawmakers who fear that apps such as TikTok could be sending vital user information to China. On another note, TikTok has just achieved the milestone of 1.5 billion downloads on Apple App Store and Google Play Store globally.