Apple is expected to announce its long-awaited music streaming service during the WWDC keynote later today, and despite tough competition from the likes of Spotify, the company has incredibly ambitious plans to sign up 100 million subscribers.
If you’re searching for further evidence that music streaming is overtaking downloads, look no further than a new report claiming that over the last quarter European revenue from Spotify streams were 13% higher than revenues from iTunes downloads.
The report comes from Kobalt, a company that helps collect music royalties on behalf of thousands of big-name artist. Currently it only collects earnings from Spotify streams in Europe — which means it’s unknown if similar figures are true in the U.S.
This time last year, iTunes’ earnings were 32% higher than that of Spotify in Europe, although streaming revenues have tripled over the past two years.
Having helped pioneer the concept of the $0.99 music track on iTunes, Apple is now trying to bring down the price of streaming music.
According to a new report published by Re/code, Apple is pushing music labels for extensive price cuts that would bring the cost of a Beats Music subscription from its current $10 price point all the way down to $5.
The death of cable TV bundling is nearly upon us, as signaled by HBO’s announcement today that it will offer an internet-based streaming subscription in 2015.
“That is a large and growing opportunity that should no longer be left untapped,” said HBO CEO and chairman Richard Plepler. “It is time to remove all barriers to those who want HBO.”
That’s big news in an industry that has been incredibly resistant to disruptors like Apple. And the Apple TV specifically stands to gain immensely from this shift towards Hollywood finally selling premium content unbundled.
Apple is reportedly in early talks with music labels about “a new set of rights and features,” prior to the company’s Beats Music refresh next year.
No concrete details were provided about what these rights and features might involve, but Re/code claims Apple is gunning for lower content licensing fees, that would enable the company to charge under its current $10 price point.