Streaming royalty's calculator.
Calculate how much you can earn with your music on the most popular streaming services.
Using a calculator like ours is the only way to get an idea of how much you can earn with your music on streaming services. Platforms and services generally don’t reveal how much they pay to rights holders and artists. That’s why we use historical data to generate an estimate for you.
In comparison to other tools you might find online, ours uses real data from royalty reports we receive for our artists. We also update the calculator regularly so it always has the most recent and up-to-date data to work with. This means it’s very accurate: the amount you get when you input a play amount will be very close to the amount you’ll actually receive.
How much you can earn per play can differ a lot per streaming service. This is due to differences in pricing, the percentage a service pays to rights holders, the countries/territories where a service is available and a lot of other factors. Let’s take a look at a comparison of the most popular ones.
Using the royalties calculator is super easy. Simply enter an amount of plays in the field and click the ‘calculate estimate’ button. The calculator will take a second to think, and then output a range of earnings you can expect on every streaming service. This is a minimum expected amount and a maximum expected amount. Most of the time, your actual earnings will fall somewhere between these numbers (although that’s never guaranteed).
Streaming services included in the calculator are: Spotify, Apple Music, Tidal, Deezer, YouTube, Amazon Music and Napster. We’re working to include even more services so check again in the future for updates!
The amount you enter can be an expected amount of plays. If you will be doing a lot of promotion for your new release, and know you can get to 100.000 plays in a year, you can enter that number. But you can also use the calculator to check if plays and earnings you already received are within the usual expected range. If they aren’t, that can be a sign you need to change something about your music or marketing efforts.
What are streaming royalties?
Streaming royalties are the money you get paid when your song is streamed on a service like Spotify, Tidal or Apple Music. Every time your music is streamed, you will receive money.
It’s good to remember that even though this payment per stream is very low (fractions of a cent), you get paid for every single stream. That’s every stream today, every stream in two weeks, every stream in two months and every stream in five years. As long as people listen to your music – you get paid! Usually, that means that over time, streaming earnings are much higher than earnings from sales on stores like iTunes.
How are streaming royalties calculated?
Streaming services generally don’t disclose how they calculate their royalties. The amount you get paid depends on a lot of factors, including:
Length of play: how long is your track streamed for? If it’s under 30 seconds, you don’t get paid by most services.
Type of platform: does the service deliver streams on demand (where you can choose which track you want to hear, like Spotify or Apple Music), or is it non-interactive (where you listen to a more general ‘station’, like Pandora).
Type of subscriber: is the user listening with a free account, or do they pay for the service? Plays from premium subscribers pay a lot more than free plays.
Due to these factors (and more), the payment you receive per stream will never be static and change constantly. That’s why our calculator gives you an average range instead of one static number.
Who receives streaming royalties?
It might be surprising to hear, but streaming royalties are never paid directly to artists or bands. Instead, earnings are paid to a label or distributor, who then in turn pays the artist. The intermediary can also keep a cut of the earnings for themselves – and they often do. This is called ‘royalty share’.
When you have a deal with a label, the royalty share is often used for marketing, distribution, publishing services and everything else the label does for you. If you are using a distributor, the royalty share is used to pay for data storage or royalty processing.
At Indepentia, we don’t keep any of your royalties. 100% of your earnings are passed on to you.
Earnings per play on different stores
As of 2021, Spotify pays around € 0,0037 per stream to rights holders, or about € 3,70 per 1000 streams.
Spotify has around 365 million active users, of which 165 million premium subscribers. This includes subscribers on the ‘family’, ‘duo’ or ‘student’ plans. In total, they have paid over 31 billion to rights holders, of which more than 5 billion in the last 12 months.
When taking a look at the royalty reports we receive, Spotify usually delivers the most amount of streams (and royalties) of any streaming platform.
Apple Music pays € 0,0067 per stream on average, so about € 6,70 per 1000 streams.
The service has no free plan, but around 72 million active paying users.
Even though the amount paid per stream is higher than Spotify, the total earnings of this store are usually less. This is due to the total amount of streams the service delivers, which in our reports is only about 1/3rd of Spotify.
Apple Music is usually the second most popular streaming service in our royalty reports.
Lossless music streaming service Tidal pays rights holders about € 0,011 per stream, or about € 11 per 1000 streams. This is a very high payout per stream and is why they claim to pay the biggest percentage of their earnings to artists.
The service does not release any subscriber data, but estimates vary somewhere between 1-5 million. As you can see, this is nothing compared to Spotify or Apple music.
Due to this small subscriber base, the total payouts you will see from Tidal will generally still be very low.
French streaming service Deezer pays around € 0,0055 per stream, or € 5,50 per 1000 streams, which is higher than Spotify but lower than Apple Music.
Deezer has about 16 million active users with about 7 million of those being paying subscribers. This includes users who receive Deezer Premium for free with their mobile phone plan – which is one of the main ways the service promotes its services. According to CEO Hans-Holger Albrecht, around 25% of Deezer’s revenue is from these kind of ‘bundles’.
While Deezer is not growing or shrinking much, they have a steady subscriber base and are an important service to include in your marketing efforts.
Amazon Music is on the lower paying end of streaming services, sending rights holders about € 0,0034 per stream (or about € 3,40 per 1000 streams).
The last subscriber data for the service is from January 2020, when they announced they “reached more than 55 million customers globally“, with most of those being premium subscribers. This is either through Amazon Prime, which includes an Amazon Music Premium subscription, or directly.
We don’t see Amazon Music paying much in our royalty reports. However, they are ramping up their focus on music and support for artists with artist tools like Amazon Music for Artists.
Launched long ago as a mp3 file sharing service, Napster now is a fully legit music streaming service with over 5 million users. They have the highest payout of all streaming services by far, paying around € 0,016 per stream, or € 16,00 per 1000 streams (!).
While total payouts from Napster are relatively small, the service is very different from others on this list. They not only offer music streaming to end-users directly, but also serve as a back-end for other businesses to build their music services upon. Definitely something to keep your eye on going into the future.