You remember that Tidal press conference from a few weeks ago, right? Well, Jay-Z and friends’ master plan to get their piece of the streaming pie isn’t going so well, according to some reports surfacing today that show Tidal is languishing in the app charts.
Since Tidal neared the top 20 in downloads in the United States iTunes App Store during week one, it’s plummeted to no. 872 overall and no. 51 for music apps as of today. Making matters worse, Spotify, Pandora and even Beats Music have been on the rise in that same time frame, with all three holding down spots on the iTunes App Store top 20 revenue chart according to a BGR report. Things are just as bad on Google Play, where after peaking at no. 7 in music apps and no. 112 overall on April 6, Tidal is now no. 51 in music apps and has crashed out of the overall chart altogether.
It’s hard to see where the comeback comes from. Despite being sent up in the media and in public as a needlessly more expensive alternative to Spotify, Tidal is actually the same $10 per month as its rival—it’s only the uncompressed file streaming service that costs $20 per month. The download numbers indicate that mobile users aren’t going for either price tier, which might not be too surprising since the Court of Internet Public Opinion ruled harshly against roughly a dozen mega-successful artists trying to muscle their way into the business side of streaming music under the false front of an artist-owned revolution.
In all likelihood, Tidal is going to end up as a cautionary tale about marketing—while every good publicity stunt needs a little embellishment and misdirection, never underestimate the intelligence of your target audience, especially not in an era where your target audience can all get together and make Illuminati jokes on Twitter at your expense.