In a single week people pressed play over 500 million times via streaming services like Spotify, Deezer and Google Play. But what does the future have in store for streaming?

Mark Ronson, Ed Sheeran and Rihanna were the most popular artists streamed of the week, Ed Sheeran also being the most streamed of 2015 so far with no fewer than 170 million hits.

Music streaming is spiralling in popularity, that’s no secret. Around twice as many songs are being streamed this year compared to 2014.

Geoff Taylor, chief executive of the British Phonographic Industry and the Brit Awards, said: “It’s remarkable that we now speak of billions of audio streams per month – it demonstrates vividly just how quickly streaming is being embraced.”

And with companies like Apple Music, Jay-Z’s Tidal and (apparently) Facebook joining the streaming competition, it’s unforeseeable as to which service will become the most popular.

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Tom Pakinkis, editor of Music Week, said: “Streaming is widely regarded as the future by much of the music industry, and the key to returning the business to health once again.

“With the addition of Apple Music to the mix, there’s hope across the industry that growth will continue to accelerate and we’ll soon see streaming become a mass market proposition. Despite the decline of CDs, the UK market is still roughly 60% physical.”

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Taylor Swift stands up for creators’ rights.

While Ed Sheeran’s songs are breaking records on streaming services, his BFF Taylor Swift has removed all her music, stating: “Music is art, and art is important and rare. Important, rare things are valuable. Valuable things should be paid for. It’s my opinion that music should not be free, and my prediction is that individual artists and their labels will someday decide what an album’s price point is. I hope they don’t underestimate themselves or undervalue their art.”

Despite the boom in streaming, royalties probably won’t match this rate of increase as many users are streaming for free – boo.

You can watch the video for Mark Ronson’s Uptown Funk – the most streamed song of the record breaking week – here…

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