Apple recruits ‘Head of Social Media’, will be stationed out of Beats’ West Los Angeles HQ

Tim Cook iPhone 6 tweet

Apple is looking to hire a new Head of Social Media and Content that will lead and expand on its current social media strategy. The job will be based out of Culver City, which could hint at Apple’s plans to align its overall social media strategy closer with its recently acquired Beats Electronics division which is located there. The West LA office is also in close proximity to its lead global Ad/Marketing agency Media Arts Lab. Read more

Billboard 200 chart will include streaming listens from Beats, Spotify, Google Play, & others in album sales

Eddy Cue, Jimmy Iovine, Apple, Beats Music, Code Conference

Billboard is about to add data from music streaming services to its weekly Billboard 200 charts for the first time as services like Spotify and Apple’s Beats Music become increasingly popular. The New York Times reports that Billboard and Nielsen SoundScan plan to start incorporating both streams and downloads from music streaming services, in addition to the music sales the chart already covered, in order to more accurately reflect popular albums based on what users are listening to. The first chart including streaming services will include data for next week and arrive online Dec. 4: Read more

Apple reportedly bundling Beats Music with iOS next year

iPhone 6 Beats Music

According to a new report from the Financial Times, Apple is expected to bundle the Beats Music streaming service with an upcoming version of iOS next year.

Apple will bundle the subscription music service it acquired from Beats into its iOS operating system early next year, instantly making it available on hundreds of millions of iPhones and iPads – and ramping up pressure on Spotify, the market leader in music streaming.

The report comes amid rumors that Apple is planning to rebrand the Beats Music subscription service for a potential relaunch around February, although FT has added that the bundling is expected “as early as March.” Read more

Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine school for entrepreneurs geared to Steve’s vision of technology & liberal arts, they tell the WSJ

The undergraduate academy for entrepreneurs created at the University of Southern California by Beats co-founders Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine is geared to fulfilling Steve Jobs’ vision of operating at the intersection of technology and the liberal arts, say the duo in a WSJ profile.

There’s a new kid in town, and he’s brought up on an iPad from one and a half years old. But the problem with some of the companies up north [in Silicon Valley] is that they really are culturally inept. I’ve been shocked at the different species in Northern and Southern California—we don’t even speak the same language. The kid who’s going to have an advantage in the entertainment industry today is the kid who speaks both languages: technology and liberal arts. That’s what this school is about.

Iovine said in a USC commencement speech that The Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young Academy for Arts, Technology and the Business of Innovation was there to “inspire, challenge, and satisfy the curiosity of the next wave of game-changers” …  Read more

Report: Spotify overtakes iTunes in European royalty earnings for musicians as shift to music streaming continues

spotify

The latest evidence of the continued trend away from music downloads toward streaming services was provided by Kobalt, a company that collects music royalties on behalf of thousands of artists, reports TechCrunch. Income from Spotify overtook that from iTunes for the first time in Q1 of this year, putting Spotify 13% ahead of iTunes.

While Kobalt operates only in Europe, there is no reason to believe that the trend would be different in the U.S. …  Read more

Trent Reznor discusses his new role at Apple, the Beats acquisition, and U2’s free album

Beats Reznor Iovine Dre

Trent Reznor with Beats co-founders Jimmy Iovine and Dre Dre

When Apple announced plans to acquire Beats Electronics and Beats Music earlier this year, Nine Inch Nails frontman Trent Reznor’s involvement with the streaming music service under Apple’s ownership quickly came in question. A spokesperson for Beats Music said Reznor was still with the company at the time and we reported that Reznor would in fact join Apple despite major staff changes at Beats during the transition. Reznor, who has been credited as Beats Music Chief Creative Officer, has finally opened up about his current role at Apple in an interview with Billboard revealing that he’s “fully in it right now” on an unannounced music project… Read more

Apple reportedly pushing to get Beats Music prices down to $5 per month

iPhone 6 Beats Music

A new report by Re/code gives some extra details about Apple’s future plans for its streaming service, Beats Music. A few weeks ago Apple was reportedly looking to push prices down, although specifics were not known at the time.

Today, Re/code says that Apple wants to cut prices in half, from $10 a month to $5 a month. This would be part of a relaunch of the Beats Music service — exactly what a ‘relaunch’ entails is not yet known. It is possible that Apple will disassociate the Beats brand from its streaming service.

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Apple Stores expected to provide after-sales service for Beats headphones and speakers soon

beats

Greek site Techingreek.com is reporting that Apple Service Providers will be providing after-sales service for Beats headphones and speakers within the country, suggesting that Apple itself may be doing the same in countries with Apple retail stores.

The site says that the above message was sent to Apple Service Providers in Greece, stating that they will provide service for Beats Electronics products “in the near future” …  Read more

Designers mock up Apple Watch versions of popular iOS applications

unity_thinkapps_messenger

Facebook Messenger

Thinkapps’ Build Blog has published a few designer mockups showing what popular third-party applications might look like on Apple’s new smartwatch with some interesting results. The apps were created by several different designers, and you can see that each app maintains some of the branding and design you’d expect while conforming to the smaller wearable UI and its new input devices like the Digital Crown.

Above you’ll find the design for Facebook Messenger, which features a contact view made up of circular contact photos with online indicators that closely resembles the watch’s home screen. The message view sports a single reply button that presumably uses the device’s built-in dictation capability to compose a response.

Below you’ll find designs for apps like Beats Music, Skype, Uber, YouTube, and more. Keep in mind that these designs are hardly official, but represent the types of user interfaces you might see when the folks in Cupertino release the Apple Watch early next year.

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Looking to revamp Beats Music at a lower rate, Apple asks music labels to cut streaming prices

Beats on Apple TV

Last month Apple was rumored to be looking for a way to shut down the current version of the Beats Music streaming service that it acquired as part of the Beats Electronics deal, though the claim of a shutdown was quickly shot down in favor of an upcoming rebranding effort.

Today Re/code has revealed a bit more about Apple’s plans for the new service, which is expected to be revealed in February, according to some reports. According to Re/code, Apple wants to cut the price of the streaming service below the current $10 mark, and it’s asking music companies to cut a special deal on licensing rights to accomplish that.

Read more