Development of an Online Music Streaming App: Features, Cost, and much more!


Music streaming apps have always been a convenient way for listeners to access their favorite artists and tracks- anytime and anywhere! One of the main reasons behind the immense popularity of music apps is that today almost everyone is connected to a seamless network connection, even on low bandwidth. Moreover, most music apps can run in the background without keeping the mobile screen active- in contrast to video streaming apps like Youtube. Additionally, advancements in Generative AI are enhancing music streaming services by enabling personalized recommendations and unique content creation, further revolutionizing how listeners discover lesser-known artists and new songs. For artists, these apps offer a platform to display their talents and gain a broader user base, while Generative AI opens up new avenues for creative expression and audience engagement.

In the current digital era, the popularity of online music streaming apps has skyrocketed, revolutionizing the way people listen to music. With the global music streaming market size estimated at USD 34.53 billion in 2022 and projected to grow at a CAGR of 14.4% from 2023 to 2030 , the potential for new and innovative music streaming services is immense.

Apps like Spotify have taken the market by storm- with over 340 million active users, 155+ million paid subscribers, and about 40% share of the global music streaming market. Reports depict that between 2014 and 2020, the revenue generated by music apps rose up to 500%. Additionally, In 2021, Spotify projected that its monthly active users would grow to 407 million to 427 million. This is not surprising as there are 186.7 million digital music users in the U.S. alone! 

Now that we are clear on why you should consider developing a music streaming app, let's get into the nitty gritty details. Here are some essential factors to consider while developing a music streaming app that will help your business stand apart from the competition in the market.

What are Types of Music Streaming Applications?


Music streaming applications can be divided into three categories: 

#1 Radio Streaming Services

This allows customers to either manually tune to a particular radio channel or listen to the pre-set radio stations. The can listen to playlists curated in terms of genres, artists, and a lot more. 

Example: AccuRadio, iHeartRadio, SiriusXM.

#2 Music Media Libraries

Music Media Libraries allow users to obtain access to unlimited songs on a monthly subscription basis. For a limited amount of songs, some of these apps also offer free listening. 

Example: Spotify, Apple Music, SoundCloud. 

#3 Cloud Storage Based Music Players

These platforms allow the users to organize, manage and listen to media files that fall under specific categories or genres.

Example: CloudPlayer, pCloud, AudioBox

Monetization of Audio Streaming Apps


As a business owner, even if you plan on offering a free-to-download music app, two monetization opportunities can help you gain sales and popularity across your target region.

#1 Subscription Model

The app offers free and premium versions to the users according to their listening preferences. This model can be on a monthly or yearly basis. Spotify is an example of a subscription-based model. Users who do not subscribe will have to listen to ads within short intervals of time. If users opt for a paid subscription, they can avoid the ads that interfere with their listening experience.

#2 Advertisements

Other companies can pay you to run their ads on your app. These ads can either be shown as a pop-up on-screen or between-song intervals.

You can also choose to mix the monetization models as per your preference!

Must have Development Features


A good music streaming apps must possess the following features:

  • Quick access to music

  • Affordable Subscription Rates

  • Offline Storage of songs

  • Social sharing feature for users to share music and playlists

Apart from this, here is a breakdown of the features for the User and Admin Panel.

User Panel

  • Registration and User onboarding: Quick and easy registration via the phone number, google account, etc., for new users. Easy login functionality once registration is done.
  • Profile: Edit, add, and remove profile details as needed
  • Browse and Search Content by Filter: Browse different genres, languages, types of content, artist, and many other filters. 
  • Offline usage: Download songs for offline use
  • Link Sharing: Share the music link on social networks
  • Playlist functionality: Create and add songs to a playlist. The playlist can either be private or public depending on the user's choice 
  • Payment Gateway:  To allow the users to make secure payments for their selected subscription plans.
  • Additional features: 

    ○ Play songs on loop. 

    ○ Play music even if the app is running in the background. 

    ○ Display song details even on the lockscreen (Example: Artist name, track name, song cover)

Admin Panel 

  • Profile section: Edit, add and remove profile details as and when needed

  • Profile section: Edit, add and remove profile details as and when needed

  • Manage Platform: Upload or delete music tracks. Pre-listen to tracks before uploading to the platform

  • Create Playlists:  Curate playlists based on artists, categories, etc. to share recommendations with other users 

  • User Management:   Manage Users, music artists registered on the app. Manage subscriptions & memberships of these users

  • Run advertising/promotions/discounts/offers: Timely display of advertisements and offers. Ability to send push notifications to users. 

Technology Stack

Android Platform Java, Kotlin
iOS Platform Swift, Objective C
Front End Development JavaScript
Back End Development PHP, Java
Database MongoDB, MySQL, PostgreSQL
Music File Storage in Device Cache Cassandra/PostgreSQL
Cloud Storage AWS, Amazon S3, GCP (Google Cloud Platform)
Data Management and Processing Kafka Software

Navigating Licensing in Music Streaming App Development

When developing a music streaming app, securing proper licensing is vital to ensure legal compliance and a rich music catalog. There are two primary types of licenses to consider:

Public Performance Rights: These are necessary for streaming music to the public. Acquiring these rights typically involves negotiations with music rights organizations (like BMI, ASCAP, or SESAC in the USA) that represent songwriters, composers, and music publishers.

Mechanical Licenses: These are required for reproducing and distributing musical compositions. They are usually obtained from music publishers or through agencies like the Harry Fox Agency in the USA.

In addition to these, synchronization licenses might be required if you plan to pair music with visual media. Also, consider direct agreements with record labels, especially for popular tracks, which can be more expensive but essential for a competitive music catalog.

Cost Implications: Licensing costs vary based on the music's popularity, the artist, and the type of license. Budget accordingly, as these costs can be significant.

Legal Considerations: Ensure compliance with international copyright laws, especially if your app serves a global audience. This may involve obtaining licenses from multiple countries.

Strategic Partnerships: Collaborating with established music licensing companies can simplify the process and provide access to a broader music library.

Types of Music Streaming App Development

The timeline to develop the application has a significant impact on its cost of development. Therefore, you can either opt for an MVP model (Most Viable Product) or a full-fledged development approach.

In the MVP approach, an app with only the most essential features is developed and put out in the market. Then, based on customer feedback, the app is modified, and a better version is released.

 In case of full-fledged development, the app will be released for use only when each and every feature is completely developed and tested. 

In both cases, the time to market differs drastically. But, more importantly, in the case of an MVP, you will be able to analyze market requirements and build on the app's features accordingly. As a result, there is no risk of developing a component that is not required by your target audience- thereby saving development time and cost.

Cost and Turn Around Time

Features Timeline
UI/UX design 150-180 hours
User Login and Profile 40- 60 hours
Content Search 120-150 hours
Payment Gateway 80-90 hours
Admin Panel 200-250 hours
Social Sharing 60-70 hours
Personalized Music Recommendation 100-150 hours
Music Player 70-90 hours
Player manager 70-80 hours

Considering the above features, the total cost for MVP development in the USA would range from $20,000-$30,000. On the other hand, an app with advanced functionalities, third-party APIs, etc., can be priced between $50000-$60000.

Final Thoughts

The online music streaming domain has gained immense popularity, especially in the era of the pandemic. The work culture has majorly shifted to the Work from Home model, where everyone is working at their own comfort. This is the right time to introduce a music streaming app into the user market and grab the opportunities for improved ROI that follow.  Biz4Group's seasoned team of creative UX designers and development experts can help you create commercial music streaming app within 6-7 weeks. Get in touch with our experts and get a free consultation session today!!


1. What are the types of music streaming applications?

Music streaming apps are categorized into Radio Streaming Services, Music Media Libraries, and Cloud Storage Based Music Players, each offering unique features.

2. How can music streaming apps be monetized?

Monetization strategies include a subscription model and advertisements, allowing revenue generation through premium services or ad placements.

3. What are essential features for a music streaming app?

Key features include quick access to music, affordable subscription rates, offline storage, and social sharing capabilities.

4. What is the technology stack for developing a music streaming app?

The technology stack typically includes Java or Kotlin for Android, Swift for iOS, JavaScript for front-end, PHP or Java for back-end, and various databases and cloud storage options.

5. How much does it cost to develop a music streaming app?

The cost ranges from $20,000-$30,000 for an MVP in the USA, while more advanced apps with third-party APIs can cost between $50,000-$60,000.

Meet the Author


Sanjeev Verma

Sanjeev Verma, the CEO of Biz4Group LLC, is a visionary leader passionate about leveraging technology for societal betterment. With a human-centric approach, he pioneers innovative solutions, transforming businesses through AI Development, IoT Development, eCommerce Development, and digital transformation. Sanjeev fosters a culture of growth, driving Biz4Group's mission toward technological excellence. He’s been a featured author on IBM and TechTarget.

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