Apple could be trying to kill free Spotify streaming before launching own music service

Company has been putting pressure on record labels not to renew their agreements with rival streaming service, reports say

Andrew Griffin
Tuesday 05 May 2015 07:53
Comments
If a deal to buy tBeats, founded by hip-hop star Dr Dre (pictured) and music producer Jimmy Iovine went through, it would be Apple’s biggest ever acquisition
If a deal to buy tBeats, founded by hip-hop star Dr Dre (pictured) and music producer Jimmy Iovine went through, it would be Apple’s biggest ever acquisition

Apple is encouraging record labels to kill off the free tier of Spotify streaming, ahead of the launch of its own service, according to reports.

The company has been using its might in the music industry to tell labels not to renew the licenses that allow Spotify to stream music on its free tier, reports the Verge. Most of Spotify’s 60 million users are on the free service, with 15 million people paying.

Shutting down the free service is a way of forcing those 45 million people to make a choice again about what streaming service they want to use. In a market where people tend to stick one service and stick with it, if Apple were to successfully get rid of competitors’ free tiers, it could remove a big barrier to getting people to move onto its own music app.

Apple has also been encouraging companies not to license their music to YouTube, another key competitor, according to the Verge.

Apple is set to launch its own streaming service this year. It is expected to be unveiled at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference in June.

Apple’s plans for the music service — which is set to be based on Beats, after Apple bought it for $3 billion last year — have already raised the interest of the European Commission. Reports last month said that the EC was contacting a number of record labels and other groups to investigate the deals that the company had made in advance of the launch of the service.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in