Spotify has stamped its authority as the world’s biggest music subscription service with 10 million users, paying around $120-per-year for the luxury of ad-free music, which adds up to a very healthy $1.2b annual revenue from subscriptions alone.

Spotify logo

“Ten million subscribers is an important milestone for both Spotify and the entire music industry,” said Daniel Ek, chief executive and founder of Spotify. “We’re widening our lead in the digital music space.”

The news comes as Apple are in the middle of purchasing Beats, the music accessory company – specialising in headphones - started by Dr. Dre that morphed into one of the world’s most powerful music brands. With a music subscription service of its own, Apple will be key to steal some of those subscribers from Spotify.

More: 10 things you never knew about Spotify

'We've had an amazing year, growing from 20 markets to 56 as people from around the world embrace streaming music,' added Ek. “Spotify’s growth and global reach is not only significant for us, but for the entire music industry,” the firm said. “Since 2008, Spotify has driven over $1 billion dollars to rights holders.”

That all looks rosy on the surface for Spotify, but the company spends most of that $1.2b, plus advertising money, on licensing new music. In fact, it has yet to turn significant profit. Businessweek points out a report estimating the company has lost $200 million since it was founded.

More: Pixies Announce Exclusive Spotify Session Plus World Tour 2014

What’s more, despite Apple being recently usurped by Google as the world’s most valuable brand, combining the luxurious superiority associated with Apple’s products with the reputation Beats has for providing high quality, fashionable headphones, the music streaming landscape could still face a major shift in the coming years.