Apple appears set to abandon its plans to offer the rebranded Beats streaming music service for less than the $9.99/month charged by Spotify, Rdio and Google Play Music. Billboard reports that Apple’s attempts to use its clout to negotiate better deals with record labels have been unsuccessful.
Negotiations for Apple’s upcoming subscription service are evidence labels are standing firm on pricing. Industry sources say Apple has backed down from its effort to lower monthly pricing for its subscription service to $7.99 from $9.99.
The report says that the deals offered by the labels would have left Apple losing money if it had gone ahead with its plan to offer the service for the rumored $7.99/month …
Earlier reports suggested that Apple had originally hoped to offer the service for just $5/month, half the price of existing services, before scaling back its ambitions to the $7.99 level. It now appears likely Apple will be forced to go with the standard $9.99/month pricing.
Billboard also reports that Apple’s hopes that it might be able to negotiate exclusive releases more easily than its competitors have likewise been thwarted.
An industry source dismisses rumors that Apple will be able to outmaneuver and outbid its competitors on exclusives for most key releases. “Apple is one of the biggest companies in the world. If they want exclusive content, they’re going to have to get out the checkbook.”
Google Play Music did originally offer a $7.99/month price for early subscribers, but standard pricing is $9.99/month.