Apple Music Hits 38 Million Paid Subscribers

Apple Music Hits 38 Million Paid Subscribers

Apple’s streaming music service now has 38 million paid subscribers, up from 36 million in February, the company said on Monday.

Apple is locked in race for subscribers with, Alphabet’s Google and others as streaming music becomes the dominant form of paid music consumption. Apple’s number compares to 71 million premium subscribers at the end of 2017 at industry leader Spotify, which plans to list shares in the coming weeks on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol SPOT.

Apple said Eddy Cue, senior vice president of Internet software and services, disclosed the most recent subscriber number for Apple Music at the South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas.

Amazon Music Unlimited has 16 million paying subscribers, and Pandora Media has 5.48 million total subscribers. Google does not release paid subscriber numbers for its service, Google Play Music.

Apple, Spotify, Google and other services charge $9.99 (roughly Rs. 650) a month for music. Amazon offers its service to members who already pay for its Prime membership, which includes shipping, video content and other benefits, for $7.99 per month.

In addition to its paid service, Spotify also offers an free ad-supported version to help draw users into the service. Apple Music does not offer an ad-based version and instead uses a three-month free trial to lure customers. Cue said Apple has 8 million subscribers currently in the free trial period, the first time Apple has disclosed the number of trial users.


Tencent Sees Profit on Smartphone Games, WeChat Now Has 980 Million Users

Tencent Sees Profit on Smartphone Games, WeChat Now Has 980 Million Users

Chinese Internet giant Tencent Holdings Ltd on Wednesday posted a 69 percent jump in quarterly net profit, beating expectations, on strong smartphone games revenue.

Net profit for the three months ended September rose to CNY 18 billion ($2.72 billion), China’s largest social media and gaming company said in a filing to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.

This was above an average estimate of CNY 15.18 billion from six analysts polled by Thomson Reuters.

Revenue rose 61 percent to 65 billion yuan, against an estimate of CNY 60.78 billion.

Monthly active users of the social media mobile app WeChat hit 980 million, up from 963 million three months ago.

Revenue from smartphone games, helped by its popular title Honour of Kings, grew by 84 percent to CNY 18.2 billion in the quarter, Tencent said in the filing.


Cheetah Mobile’s App Gets $50 Million in Funding, Looks to Expand in India

Cheetah Mobile's App Gets $50 Million in Funding, Looks to Expand in India

Aiming to make inroads into the Indian market, Chinese firm Cheetah Mobile on Tuesday announced that its live-streaming platform app has received $50 million (roughly Rs. 326 crores) in funding from China-based tech company Bytedance.

With the new alliance and funding,, that has more than 35 million global users, seeks to expand into more local languages and other content genres to reach an even broader audience in India.

“We are delighted to welcome Bytedance as a strategic partner for our fast-growing, live-streaming business. Bytedance’s investment will accelerate the growth of’s live video and short video businesses,” Sheng Fu, Cheetah Mobile’s Chief Executive Officer, said in a statement.

Following its debut in India earlier this year, is now pursuing an expansion strategy by setting up a new office in Mumbai and building strategic partnerships with local influencers with the goal of creating popular content for the users.

As part of the definitive agreement, will provide live-streaming services to Bytedance in the overseas markets.


Prince Charles backs $10 million new education bond for marginalised children in India

Britain’s Prince Charles and his wife Camilla attend a cultural event at the British Council in New Delhi on Wednesday. Photo: AFP

Britain’s Prince Charles and his wife Camilla attend a cultural event at the British Council in New Delhi on Wednesday. Photo: AFP

London: Britain’s Prince Charles, on a two-day visit to India, has given his backing to a new development bond for India to provide education to marginalised children in the country.

The $10 million education development impact bond (DIB) has been created by the British Asian Trust, founded by the Prince of Wales to fight poverty in south Asia, and is designed to improve learning outcomes for thousands of marginalised children in India.

The bond is intended as an innovative and sustainable social impact investment tool which will be tied in with performance and outcomes of educational initiatives, starting in India and then across the trust’s other regions of operation.

“I hope that through the trust we can impact the lives of not just children in India but also change the mindsets of philanthropists around the world,” said Prince Charles, who arrived in New Delhi on Wednesday. The education development impact bond has been developed by the trust alongside UBS Optimus Foundation with the aim of transforming the future of education in India.

Under the initiative, the DIB will provide funding to four local not-for-profit delivery partners in the country over four years, delivering a range of operational models including principal and teacher training, direct school management, and supplementary programmes.

It is intended to improve literacy and numeracy learning levels for over 200,000 primary school students from marginalised communities in Delhi, Gujarat and Rajasthan. The UK government’s department for international development (DfID) will contribute technical assistance and insights to the project as part of a wider partnership.

“The DfID is exploring new and innovative ways to finance programmes which will transform the lives of some of the world’s poorest people. We are proud to support the British Asian Trust as they develop their development impact bond, which will provide access to quality education for hundreds of thousands of children,” said DfID minister Priti Patel.

The bond has been described as a step towards a greater focus on social impact financing as a transformational tool for philanthropy. The concept of development impact bonds is intended as a result-oriented way to attract new capital into development, with a strong emphasis on data and evidence.

Richard Hawkes, chief executive of the British Asian Trust, explains: “At the heart of our programme strategy is a real determination to continue applying business principles to the work. We are convinced that only by applying these to philanthropy and to development are you really able to meet the needs of the greatest number of people.”

Sir Ronald Cohen, international philanthropist and a champion of global impact investing, described the British Asian Trust’s initiative as “ground-breaking” and capable of delivering vital social improvement at scale. In India, Prince Charles will meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi for bilateral talks as part of a series of events planned during his two-day visit with wife Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall. PTI