Just a few short weeks ago, a gaggle of the biggest names in music gathered to announce Jay Z’s new streaming music service, Tidal. I remind you of this fact because, statistically speaking, you’ve probably already forgotten about it: Tidal is now the 50th most popular music app in the iTunes store, and doesn’t even crack the top 700 overall.
Any hot new app will see a big drop in downloads after the hype from its launch dies down, but it doesn’t look like Tidal was all that hot to begin with. It briefly peaked at #19 overall before falling out of the top 200 less than two weeks later.
Meanwhile, its competitors are surging: Pandora is at #7, Spotify is at #34, and Beats Music just broke the top 50. Even circa-2013 Spotify challenger Rdio is seeing more downloads than Tidal this week.
Some of Tidal’s problems were apparent to anyone who is not a wealthy member of the illuminati or close personal friend of Jay Z: its main value proposition was that, for only 10 dollars a month more than you’re paying for Spotify—that’s just two Starbucks lattes!—you can feed and clothe the famous multimillionaires you see on your screen.
But it also had some less obvious flaws, like a very shittily-designed app with broken search functionality and a marketing message—attacking those other, non-artist-benefitting streaming services—that seems to have helped Spotify more than it helped Tidal. Boy Genius Report points out that Spotify saw a nice spike in downloads coinciding with the day Rihanna, Nicki, Kanye, Madonna and Jay-Z took the stage to reclaim music for the top-40 artists who already dominate it.