Apple reportedly marching on with Pandora-like music service for 2013

Apple logoApple's rumored Pandora rival may launch in 2013, as long as Apple reaches agreements with music labels over the next couple months. That's according to a new report from Bloomberg, which cites sources claiming that Apple has "intensified" its negotiations in order to launch an Internet radio service by next year.

Apple has been rumored to be working on some kind of music streaming service for years, but the rumor popped up again last month when the Wall Street Journal said Apple was once again working on it. At that time, it was believed that the new service would work on Apple's iOS devices as well as Macs "and possibly on PCs," indicating that it might be available to both mobile and desktop users via iTunes.

Bloomberg's sources didn't focus much on the functionality of the supposed service, but pointed out that it would be ad-supported. Apple's negotiations apparently revolve around this point—record companies reportedly want an "upfront fee" for Apple playing their songs in addition to a cut of the ad sales. And that's not counting their own ads for individual artists, either. "Apple sees the service as a way to grow its iAd mobile advertising platform, and is exploring ways to integrate iAd with iTunes to steer customers back to iTunes," Bloomberg wrote.

As I wrote in a staff blog post in September, a streaming, Pandora-like service isn't too far out of left field for Apple, despite the company's success with music downloads through iTunes. Music listeners of 2012 are increasingly turning to streaming services like Spotify, Pandora, Last.fm, Rdio, and others to get their fix, and leaving "old fashioned" music purchases behind. Apple most certainly doesn't want to lose (more) money to the competition, which is why it makes sense to explore the possibilities with its own ad-supported radio service.

Source: Ars Technica

Tags: Apple

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