What factors are changing the mobile music industry?

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sraman

Earlier this year, research group NPD found that over half of smartphone owners use that device to listen to music. And given the number of people I see on any given day plugged into their phones or tablets on the bus or subway each day, that finding is no surprise.

What is a bit surprising is how complicated the mobile music scene has become recently. There are the a la carte sellers like Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), which sell songs and provide devices for listening; streaming services like Pandora and Spotify; operator-run initiatives like Leap Wireless (NASDAQ:LEAP) subsidiary Cricket's Muve Music; and device-specific initiatives such as Samsung Hub and Nokia Music.

Even within those categories, the water gets a little murkier. Take streaming music, which encompasses both Pandora (streaming radio) with over 67 million reported listeners in the U.S., and Spotify (on-demand streaming) with over 24 million listeners worldwide. Add into the mix the variety of rumored streaming services from Apple, Amazon and Google (NASDAQ:GOOG), and it really gets complicated.

FierceMobileContent takes a look at the key issues that are hounding the development of the market and the dynamics that could affect both existing players and new entrants in this new special report. --Sandhya

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