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5 Companies To Watch As Music Streaming Explodes

5 Companies To Watch As Music Streaming Explodes
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Earlier this week, Nielsen SoundScan released data showing that US consumers purchased and downloaded 12 percent fewer songs in 2014 compared to a year earlier. The use of streaming services, however, increased by 54 percent.

Listening to music using online streaming subscriptions was a growing trend that many see continuing through 2015, making companies' investment in growing online services an important key to success in the music industry.

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Spotify AG continued to dominate the streaming space, making the company's rumored IPO even more enticing. Many are expecting to see Spotify go public some time in 2015, with a valuation of around $10 billion.

Pandora Media Inc (NYSE: P), Spotify's publicly-traded competition, made itself more visible this year by making a deal with Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ: MSFT) to feature a Pandora music streaming app on the company's Xbox One that will allow gamers to listen to personalized radio stations while playing.

Google Inc (NASDAQ: GOOG), hoping to hook customers who have been using YouTube to stream music, rolled out a Google Play Music All Access account, which offers users a 22-million song database for $9.99 per month.

Meanwhile, Apple Inc (NASDAQ: AAPL)'s iTunes looked to be falling behind, but many see 2015 as a developmental year, in which the company could get on board with the streaming trend.

Apple recently bought Beats Music for $3 billion, a deal which most expect to see exploited in the coming year.

Beats currently offers a $9.99 per month streaming service, which could become a part of iTunes' offerings in the near future.

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