Remember those commercials in which “stodgy” John Hodgeman embodied a PC and “young and hip” Justin Long was a Mac?
Well, now it’s Apple’s turn to feel old: A new study shows that the company’s Apple Music service has hemorrhaged Millennials, leaving it with an older user base.
According a new report from Jackdaw Research (pdf) that surveyed 500 people, 62% of users under 35 who started the three-month Apple Music trial cancelled the service, while 67% of those over 35 began to pay for it after the trial was over.
While these numbers aren’t good for Apple—especially because more young people tried the new service in the first place—a substantial number of people who stuck with the service cited Apple Music’s new music discovery feature, in addition to the iOS integration, as the reason.
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Apple Music isn’t the first time a tech giant has attempted to catch up to a popular service years too late. Google’s culturally irrelevant social network Google Plus (stylized as Google+) tried unsuccessfully to grab marketshare from Facebook. And Apple itself tried to get people to use its Maps app but couldn’t compete with Google Maps for iOS.
Being too late may not matter if the product is inherently better, but when customers put down roots, it’s very hard to pull them up—even for a better service. Many users of Spotify, which the study says is winning the digital streaming wars, have by now built up years of playlists, a low-level social network to facilitate music sharing, and comfort level with the platform. At this point, the only way for Apple Music to steal users may be lowering the price of the service below $9.99 per month.