Deezer announced last week that it had crossed 4 Million premium subscribers, and it seems that these numbers are rising faster and faster. While I still find myself trying to explain to people what Deezer is (“Wait, so France has a different thing than Spotify?”), that fact remains that the company, despite its late start on the international front, has picked up steam since its 100M€ investment last year and the music business is not a sprint, but a marathon.
While Deezer still lacks in the “Startup-style” UX that Spotify has mastered, it has quite a lot of features to boast ahead of Spotify, features which I believe may be game changers. Deezer announced last week that they now offer more tracks than Spotify – at this point I don’t have many bands that I can’t find on Spotify (I’ve been a premium user for about 3 months now, after two years of holding out), but I can see how this could make a difference in the international markets. In addition, their App Center is much more evolved than that of Spotify’s, with big mobile apps like Seevl & eDJing gaining traction due to the ability for Deezer users to switch to 3rd party apps directly from mobile – something sorely lacking from Spotify’s closed experience.
Numbers aren’t everything, but they sure do count when it comes time to the pay the bills. For now, Spotify’s 2 Million premium member lead on Deezer can be traced directly to the US Market, a market that Deezer has yet to set foot in. This common French pussyfooting (Viadeo, Dailymotion, Vente Privee, etc.) has always lead to “second best” titles, and while titles don’t count for everything, they sure do make a big difference when it comes time to write the history books.