Apple Music launches Preferred Distribution Program, could signal independent artists uploads underway
Apple Music has officially ushered in its Preferred Distribution Program, which will see the streaming platform work with music distributors CD Baby, The Orchard, and Kontor New Media, to extend premium Apple Music and iTunes privileges like advanced analytics and early access to “Sales and Trends features,” to clients of the three designated distributors.
To qualify for “Preferred Plus” partnership with Apple, distributors must meet a 40,000 songs per quarter expectation. The tracks that count towards this minimum should have a low Apple Music “rejection rate.” A step below “Preferred Plus” tier, the “Preferred” partnership rank, requires a distributor to produce 10,000 songs each quarter.
While Apple has yet to reference the longer term potential of its newly established Preferred Distribution Program, it is possible that the function could precede an Apple-supported feature that would allow independent artists to act as their own distributors in sharing their music directly to Apple Music and iTunes, akin to Spotify‘s similar model. Spotify instituted its own “preferred” group of digital distributors, and is notable for doing so prior to Apple.
H/T: DJ Mag