Jay Z's new album 4:44 is now available on all streaming services. Just kidding. The long-awaited Magna Carta Holy Grail follow-up is the first in a series of music-related exclusives from Tidal and Sprint, meaning Tidal is the only place to legally and in good conscience stream the 10-track event.
But according to a report from Variety, so-called Jay Z fans who are absolutely hell-bent on denying themselves a Tidal subscription may not have to wait very long to be rewarded for their stubbornness. A "source" said Thursday night that 4:44 will hit Apple Music after a week of exclusivity on Tidal. A separate source went a step further, claiming that the album would hit "all major services" in a week.
Depending on your views of time and existence and whatnot, a week is either a really long—or hilariously short—amount of time. Compared with the exclusivity window of other Tidal releases, however, a week is a breeze.
Beyoncé's Lemonade, released last April, is still not available for streaming anywhere else but Tidal. As Billboard noted, Lemonade performed on par with other massive albums (Drake's Views, for example) when looking at sales and downloads. When digging into the streaming data, however, the Tidal exclusivity starts to be noticeable. Views pulled more than 2 million in streaming equivalent album units that year, while Lemonade topped out at 214,000.
Kanye West's The Life of Pablo, which recently became the first streaming-only album to achieve platinum status, was also initially released as a Tidal exclusive. In fact, West once vowed that it would permanently remain an exclusive, before making it widely available on streaming services months after its release.
Jay Z has not officially announced any plans to bring 4:44 to other streaming services.