Apple will have it’s annual Worldwide Developer Conference on Monday. As per usual, they’ll have a slew of announcements and exciting news to share with Apple fans and developers alike. There have been a few leaks and rumours floating around, but one that seems pretty intriguing is a streaming service that will be called, Apple Music. It’s more than a iTunes Radio “upgrade” as well, it may shift the entire way that the tech giant approaches deals and agreements with the music industry as a whole.
Numbers have shown in the last couple years that sales over on iTunes have dipped as many listeners have transferred to streaming services like Pandora, Spotify, and Songza. Originally reported by the Financial Times, Apple Music will not only give Apple users the ability to stream, but may shift the way the company makes its money from music studios. Since the launch of iTunes Store in 2003, it’s been widely known that there have been large fees and lopsided revenue deals if musicians and their studios want their music available on the storefront. The dubbed “Apple Tax” that Steve Jobs introduced back then, is still in play today. The 70/30 split of revenue could be reduced with the introduction of Apple Music, and could charge a $9.99/$10 monthly fee as many of the competitors also do.
The service itself, isn’t just a rumour anymore. While many have suspected such a shift and an introduction of this service, Sony Music CEO Doug Morris confirmed that at Monday’s WWDC Apple Music will be officially announced. Morris said that what Apple brings to the table is $178 billion in the bank and over 800 million credit cards, and their newest acquisition of Beats. While that seems like a pure greed/economic way of looking at their influence, he has a point. Even if you don’t typically use music streaming services, there’s no question that once Apple throws in its chips and doubles down, people notice. 800 million credit cards means there’s that potential for 1.6 billion ears to stream music new and old, with Apple’s expanding media universe.