When Apple enters a new business, you know it’s not going to do so in a half-hearted, small way. When it launches its Apple-branded Beats Music service later this year, it’s a no-brainer to predict that it’s going to be a big deal for the music industry. With Apple’s deep integration of Beats into its existing iOS/iTunes ecosystem exclusively revealed by Mark Gurman added into the mix, I wonder whether the unique selling points being notched up by Apple could be enough to leave existing big-name players like Spotify, Google Play and Rdio dead in the water?
That’s rather a grand idea, of course. As of last month, Spotify reached 15 million paid subscribers–up 50% in the last six months alone. Beats Music had only a little over 100,000 subscribers at the time Apple bought the company, and is rumored to have only 2-3 times as many now. But an Apple-ified Beats Music service has four things going for it … Read more
Since its initial introduction at WWDC in June, users of iTunes Radio would be greeted with an absence of Beatles music, even when creating a specific “Beatles Radio” station. No explanation was given from Apple. Perhaps what’s most interesting here is that from the launch of the iTunes Music Store in 2003 until late 2010, Apple struggled to reach an agreement with Apple Corps to get The Beatles onto the store. This was due to a long series of legal battles with Apple Corps and Apple Inc, stretching back multiple decades. Until this past weekend, it appeared that The Beatles wouldn’t make it onto iTunes Radio either.
Wenner Media, best known for its music and politics biweekly Rolling Stone, will roll out digital replicas of both the Rolling Stone and US Weekly magazines for Apple’s iPad by early 2012. Digital versions of their dead tree counterparts will allegedly shy away from bells’n’whistles. In addition, the publisher will release the Beatles book app for iPad this coming Thursday, December 1.
A companion to the The Beatles: The Ultimate Album-by-Album Guide book that came out this summer, the app basically repurposes print content and sports much of the material from the Beatles’ book, MocoNews.net reports. This includes 122 pages with over 60 photos, enriched with 30-second previews of each song and interviews. The Beatles app will set you back ten bucks and will not initially launch on Android. And while we’re at the Beatles, it appears as part of the Apple Records settlement Yoko Ono got to copy Apple’s website look and feel.
Interestingly, it wasn’t that long ago that Jann Wenner, the co-founder of Wenner Media, dissed digital magazines as a fad. In a May AdAge interview, Wenner called out other publishers for scrambling to release tablet apps, painting the trend as “sheer insanity and insecurity and fear”. Perhaps the success of iOS 5 Newsstand prompted him to reconsider his stance? Last year, Wenner also organized a protest of sorts by running the magazine industry ad campaign that had promoted the “power of print”.
In a somewhat related app news, TED’s official app is finally available on the iPhone.