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What is TIDAL?

TIDAL is a global music and entertainment platform that brings artists and fans together through unique music and content experiences and is currently available in 52 countries.

TIDAL has over 52,7 million songs in our catalog and over 200,000 high quality videos, offering passionate music fans both a premium and high fidelity sound quality, along with high resolution video, and expertly curated editorial content.

TIDAL has the commitment of artist owners that believe in creating a more sustainable model for the music industry. The TIDAL artist-owners are Alicia Keys, Arcade Fire’s Win Butler and Regine Chassagne, Beyoncé, Calvin Harris, Coldplay’s Chris Martin, Daft Punk, Damian Marley, deadmau5, Indochine, J. Cole, Jack White, Jason Aldean, Shawn “JAY Z” Carter, Kanye West, Lil Wayne, Madonna, Nicki Minaj, Rihanna, T.I. and Usher.

How does TIDAL benefit fans?

TIDAL brings music fans closer to their favorite artists and gives on-demand access to discover new music from our massive music and video catalog. TIDAL's extensive catalog is supplemented by exclusive content, including exclusive videos and songs featuring the world's top musicians, athletes and entertainers and up-and-coming independent artists. We offer not only access to exclusive digital content, but also the ability to participate in unique real life experiences such as concerts with established or emerging artists and other direct interactions between fans and their favorite artists. Human curation is an important part of what we do at TIDAL, and we have an expert group of tastemakers to help select and promote emerging artists to a broader audience via our TIDAL Rising program. We also provide a choice of both premium and HiFi music quality that enables fans to experience music as the artists intended it to be heard.

TIDAL Programs


TIDAL X is a program that connects artists directly with fans by giving them a platform to engage with them in unique ways, including one-of-a-kind live shows, events, artist meet & greets, and concert tickets for TIDAL members to enjoy. With TIDAL’s commitment to help artists interact with their fans in new ways—the possibilities are endless for what we can offer fans. TIDAL X experiences will showcase and support artists of all levels from established artists to emerging talent.

Fan interactions and geographic data from TIDAL enable TIDAL X events to be targeted to offer compelling experiences for true fans. Examples include:

2. TIDAL Rising

TIDAL Rising is a program dedicated to artists from around the globe who have passionate fan bases and are ready to reach a wider audience with their music.

On an ongoing basis TIDAL curates and features a select group of artists across genres from around the world, with support from our artist & label relations, editorial, marketing, promotions, public relations, and social media teams, to introduce fans to vibrant and dynamic music they may have otherwise missed.

TIDAL Rising artists can leverage the following benefits:

At TIDAL, we are invested in the growth and long-term success of artists, as well as making sure they’re heard by as large an audience as possible. This special and carefully designed program cultivates artists in a way that aims to change the paradigm of the music industry and empower those with a voice that deserve to be heard.

Why was TIDAL founded?

1. Because nothing should get in between fans and artists.

TIDAL was founded with the mission of bringing fans and artists closer together and creating a sustainable industry model that values music and artists. By empowering artists with greater creative control and operating as a majority artist-owned company, TIDAL is uniquely positioned to create more value for fans, and a stronger artist-fan connection.

Music consumption is changing. It is shifting away from purchasing and owning music (via CD sales and downloads) to now accessing music via streaming without a desire to own physical copies of music. This shift represents an opportunity to create a better experience for fans by empowering artists to share what they want, when and how they want to, directly with their fans. Whether it is through sharing exclusive songs and videos, or live experiences, TIDAL provides something unique.

2. Because we believe in the next generation of artists.

While we're proud to offer a catalogue of over 48,5 million songs to TIDAL members, we know the experience shouldn't end there for music fans: so TIDAL is actively seeking and building the next generation of emerging artists while helping TIDAL subscribers easily discover new music along the way.

Through TIDAL Rising, we are actively engaging in the marketing and promotion of young, promising talent, including giving them a stage at TIDAL X events – because the future of music is only as bright as the next generation who creates it.

3. Because diversity in music matters.

We believe in the power of independent artists and that music should be as diverse as the world of people who listen to it. TIDAL celebrates artist creativity by providing a commercially viable platform to distribute music that isn't always targeted to mainstream distribution outlets. We believe that creating art should not be limited to traditional distribution formulas to drive mass appeal (e.g. shorter song lengths, language constraints), but rather artists’ true intention to create authentic music for their fans.

How does TIDAL benefit artists?

Despite an unprecedented increase in the demand for music over the past ten years, the actual value of the recorded music industry has declined by 32% over that time span.

TIDAL believes in valuing music. We are committed to creating a sustainable model for the future of the music industry, which includes maintaining value for music, respecting creativity and encouraging the active participation of artists. A more sustainable and equitable model for artists, producers and songwriters that includes paying more for streaming, can help incentivize support for streaming and create new ways to ensure music maintains its value . We support full transparency to better educate consumers and stakeholders, and encourage all music industry stakeholders to embrace open communication about the cost of their services.

Our artist-owners developed our model so that TIDAL pays the highest ratio of royalties vs. revenues to music creators of any streaming service and equal rates are paid to artists regardless of whether they're signed to a major label, an indie label, or not signed to a label at all.

TIDAL believes in the value of music and the contributions of all artists. We provide the highest compensation to artists and are consistent in our approach regardless of whether an artist is on a major label or independent. While other services compensate independent rights owners less than major labels, TIDAL pays all major and independent labels and rights owners equally. TIDAL also does not pay the labels any fees that are not disclosed.

Where do my monthly subscription fees go?

As seen in the chart above, the $9.99 Premium and $19.99 HiFi monthly subscription fees go toward paying royalties for master recordings, copyrights and various other royalties, as well as to credit card payment fees and to fund operating expenses. Operating expenses are paid from gross profit, including staff, office space, and content hosting costs.

As with other platforms, in some instances, what fans pay for include fees charged by third parties that are out of our control. For example, when someone subscribes to TIDAL via the iPhone app, Apple charges a 30% administrative fee. Similar to other apps, this is why TIDAL prices are higher within the app store ($12.99 and $25.99 if subscribed to in-app, versus the lower cost of $9.99 and $19.99 if subscribed to via TIDAL.com.)

There are a number of variables that impact an artist's royalty payments, including the following:

How are royalties calculated?

The formula below explains the Tidal royalty system in more detail:

1. Tidal Monthly Revenue

The total revenue TIDAL makes in a given month comes only from subscriptions. TIDAL does not generate revenue through advertising placement in its services. For TIDAL, artist royalties are calculated on the basis of all revenues without exception.

2. Artist's TIDAL streams / Total TIDAL streams

This ratio calculates an artist's share of total listens, based on popularity. The result determines the percentage of our total pay outs that should be paid for that artist's music rights. Importantly, all streams on TIDAL are listened to by paid subscribers; unlike other services, we do not have a free offering (allowing only for free trial periods), so the revenues paid to rights holders are not diluted by free streams and rights holders are compensated.

3. ~75% to master and publishing owners

TIDAL negotiates our royalty economics with the record labels and music publishers in each territory where we operate. Our current payment structure calls for us to pay out up to 75% of the service revenues to rights holders (including both master recording rights holders as well as music publishers).

4. Artist's royalty rate

This is the end rate paid to the artist after the rights holder royalty split and any other deductions have been applied by the record labels and publishers.

Once TIDAL has paid a rights owner the total royalties due for their accumulated streams, that label or publisher pays each artist according to that artist's contractual royalty rates. For example, a label may have a deal in which they retain 80% of all distribution fees and 20% goes to the artist.

Recoupment status may also impact the royalties artists receive from their respective labels and publishers (some labels cross collateralize streaming income against unrecouped recording costs balances).

Independent (unsigned) artists can retain up to 100% of their royalty payouts from TIDAL by using one of our aggregator partners (a small fee may be applied by such partners).

How does all of this work out in practice?

The chart shows average royalty payments for albums in terms of popularity (top 10, top 11-50 and top 51-100) for 1 million subscribers:

The bars and $USD figures are the total royalties to be paid out to rights holders for albums for 1 million subscribers on TIDAL. The average monthly gross royalty payments for the top 10 album on TIDAL are ~$52.5k, compared to ~$15.0k on average per album positioned between 11-50 in terms of popularity, and ~$7.5k per albums for those between the top 51-100 places.

Even though we are currently generating millions of dollars in royalties for rights holders for the top artists each year, we are just getting started and expect to earn artists and rights holders far more as we grow our subscriber base.

How does TIDAL generate revenues?

TIDAL generates revenues by charging users a subscription fee. TIDAL currently has 2 subscriptions tiers (and a subscriber can try either with a 30-day free trial).

1. Premium for $9.99 / month

For $9.99 per month, TIDAL's Premium tier gives users unlimited music across multiple devices including smartphones, computers and tablets, as well as access to exclusive TIDAL X events. TIDAL Premium subscribers can also create playlists and download songs to their devices for offline listening – all without intrusive advertisements.

2. HiFi for $19.99 / month

TIDAL's HiFi tier gives subscribers all the same great content and experiences as a Premium subscription, except music is delivered in lossless, CD and MQA quality (1411 kbps vs. 320 kbps for standard streaming).

HiFi streaming delivers an uncompressed sound file, which means that you can hear every instrument and every note – as the artist intended. This tier costs $19.99 per month.

3. Discount program for students

TIDAL offers a special discount program for students, in order to provide access to both our tiers at affordable prices. Student benefit from 50% discount on our subscription tiers.

4. Discount program for families

TIDAL offers a special discount program for families, in order to provide an affordable access to all family members who want to enjoy their own favorite music. Each additional family member is offered a 50% discount on both subscription tiers. The family package is limited to 5 members.

5. Discount program for US military

TIDAL offers a special discount program for owners of a military ID in the US. All eligible users will benefit from 50% discount on both our subscription tiers.

Where is TIDAL available?

TIDAL is currently available in 52 countries with plans for further international expansion soon! As we continue to grow, we'll be able to deliver more great content and TIDAL X events for our subscribers, as well as continue to contribute to the health of the music industry by growing the amount of royalties we pay to music creators.