The evolution of portable, personal, and on-demand music started in 1979 thanks to Sony with their Walkman (ウォークマン), after about 20 years of pocket radios. The Walkman then evolved into Discman (and similar devices), and at the beginning of the 2000s, the digital audio revolution came and brought Mp3 players, most notably the iPod.
We are currently in the post-iPod era. The smartphone is the primary device most people use to listen to and consume audio content.
The always-connected smartphone brought new industries into the tech space. One of these industries is streaming.
Is music streaming worth the money? (for me)
Accordingly to my (highly scientific) method, I've listened to about 1000 songs this year, organized into about 500 albums and singles.
Considering a more sane music listening habit not skewed by the streaming culture, I would've bought ten albums in a year. At this time of the year, I would've spent €100 on music, considering a price of €10 for a single album.
With streaming, I pay around half the price of that. With that, I get human-curated content like "Apple Music Today"; algorithmic recommendations; and shared playlists. Then, I don't need to manage a media server, I don't need to worry about ripping media, and I get high-quality streaming.
DRM sucks, yes. But contrary to video streaming, the quantity of music I listen to is orders of magnitude larger than the video content I watch. It makes sense economically in my case.
Long live music streaming.