As Spotify prepares to launch on Windows Phone 7, reports suggest Apple is in talks with high-ups in the music business about launching its own music-streaming services.
Quoting unnamed sources, The New York Post reported that Eddy Cue, Apple's vice president of Internet services – basically the head of iTunes - has been negotiating with the music industry with a view to moving the project forward.
The idea of an Apple streaming music service has been rumoured since the company bought, then promptly closed down, MP3-streaming business Lala. Having bought the company in December, Apple killed off its service just four months later, amidst some speculation that it was unhappy with the 10c-a-song pricing Lala had offered, and almost as much that it was planning its own cloud-based music service.
There have already been reports that Apple's own cloud-based music service, making a user's iTunes library available across a range of devices without the current need for synching, but these latest reports seem the most solid to date.
The Post's sources suggest that the Apple service could offer tiered pricing – just as Spotify does – although it believes factors such as how much music would be available in each tier and how long users would have access to it are still to be agreed.
More after the break
But it quotes a music industry executive as saying that the labels are supportive of the idea, mainly because although album download sales are still rising, sales of single tracks have been sluggish.Follow whathifi.com on Twitter Join whathifi.com on Facebook