Creating differentiation in the streaming market: Deezer’s 2018 trend predictions

As the world’s most diverse, dynamic and personal music streaming service, and one of the early pioneers of streaming, Deezer offers 44 million songs to 12 million users across 185 countries. Our continued growth as a business has most recently seen us launch in Israel and bring our HiFi service (FLAC, CD-quality audio) to Japan – the first offering of its kind in the region.

For 2018, there is huge potential for even further growth for Deezer and streaming companies worldwide, with the IFPI stating there has been a 20.5% decline in digital download revenues in 2016 and music streaming now making up the majority (59%) of digital revenues. However, as more and more players enter the market, from start-ups to technology giants, Deezer must continually evolve and innovate. Taking this into consideration, the following four technology trends demonstrate how Deezer will continue to differentiate and grow in 2018.

1. Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence

Because music is such a personal experience, we understand that people’s tastes are very different. As more and more people prefer a lean back experience that is tailored to their individual preferences, we have created Deezer Flow, your personal soundtrack, which uses a combination of unique algorithms and human curation to provide constant live access to old favourites and new discoveries.

For 2018, this move towards personalisation will continue to evolve with machine learning and artificial intelligence having the ability to serve up music based on where you are and what you are doing. Imagine heading to work on a Monday morning, feeling sluggish and tired, and your streaming service automatically understands it’s the first day back in the office and intuitively starts playing the best motivational tracks. Or having the tempo of your music change as you up the pace and switch from walking to running. Personalisation through more pinpoint precision will allow us to better connect artists with fans and brands with consumers.

2. The rise of voice activation and wearables

For 2018, voice activation will be key for Deezer. After a landmark partnership in 2017 with Google Home, we are changing the way users consume music by using voice to access the most diverse library of content with short commands such as ‘Play my Flow’. Outside of voice-controlled speakers, smart devices such as wearables will also be a major trend for music streaming in 2018, with our upcoming integration with Fitbit Ionic early next year cementing the connection between music and fitness and wellbeing.

3. Expansion of our high resolution and FLAC audio offering

High fidelity FLAC quality streaming will continue to play an important role next year, with 36 million tracks already available through Deezer’s HiFi plan. As more partners come on board, we’re increasing accessibility and the opportunity for audiophiles to experience sound ‘the way the artist intended it to be heard.’ With Japan’s recent HiFi launch, and further expansion planned in the region, we will continue to build out our Asia footprint, in addition to increasing focus in LATAM, whilst simultaneously retaining the company’s position in some of the more established streaming markets.

4. Continuing our ‘local hero’ approach

Finally, whilst we are a global business and global artists remain hugely important, local catalogues are essential. With a ‘local hero’ approach to content, in 2018 we will continue to support genres and to create original content specific to certain markets. This will range from anything from audiobooks in Germany to supporting Sertanejo artists in Brazil.