This is the most popular Apple Music song, ever

Mw65 Apple Music
(Image credit: iMore)

Apple Music remains an excellent alternative to Spotify, but it looks like its numbers can't quite compete yet. The most streamed song on Apple Music, Ed Sheeran's Shape of You has accumulated 930 million streams, falling short of Spotify's record of the Weeknd's Blinding Lights, which has been streamed 3.573 billion.

Tucked away in Apple's press release about the new Apple Music live concerts with special performances from Ed Sheeran, the numbers surrounding its streaming platform became a little clearer. They were pointed out in a tweet from Pop Base, which made the connection to the billion streams. 

Apple Music – not there yet

Spotify breaking the one billion streaming mark with some of its most popular songs is no longer a new thing. It happened as early for the platform as early as 2008, and popular songs now frequently exceed the massive number. In fact, as noted by Phone Arena, the most recent track to hit one billion streams was Miley Cyrus's Flowers, which has only been out for four months.

Does this mean that Apple is lagging behind? Not necessarily. Apple Music has fewer premium subscriptions than the Swedish streamer, which means fewer users to listen and stream different pieces. Apple Music is growing as well, while Spotify seems to be shrinking, after its weird UI debacle and continued slowness with Hi-res streaming.

Also contributing is that Spotify has a free tier of streaming, that's used by 295 million people, as of this January. That's going to make a big difference to the numbers, given that the only free option Apple has is the one-month trial subscription. If Apple wants to reach the lofty heights of multiple billions of streams, perhaps this is the next port of call.

As for the track, it's no surprise that it's from one of the biggest artists in the world and one of his most popular songs. 

Tammy Rogers
Senior Staff Writer

As iMore's Senior Staff writer, Tammy uses her background in audio and Masters in screenwriting to pen engaging product reviews and informative buying guides. The resident audiophile (or audio weirdo), she's got an eye for detail and a love of top-quality sound. Apple is her bread and butter, with attention on HomeKit and Apple iPhone and Mac hardware. You won't find her far away from a keyboard even outside of working at iMore – in her spare time, she spends her free time writing feature-length and TV screenplays. Also known to enjoy driving digital cars around virtual circuits, to varying degrees of success. Just don't ask her about AirPods Max - you probably won't like her answer.

  • Annie_M
    Apparently, I'm completely out of touch!!!
  • Just_Me_D
    I’ve tried to like Spotify on several occasions, but I just don’t get the appeal. In fact, I prefer Pandora over it. Granted, I do not listen to podcasts or specific shows. I simply stream music or play from my playlists.
  • Wotchered
    Who he ?
  • EdwinG
    I can see why Shape of You would be #1. Same for Blinding Lights.
  • Ledsteplin
    I never heard any of those songs.
  • pr1nce
    I’m an old radio guy and still keep up with some current music. Plus, I have a 24 year old daughter. Both are good songs.
  • Annie_M
    OMG, I feel so old. I used to be "up" on all the "hits". It's alarming to hear my favorites in elevators. Sigh...