Apple was apparently threatened by Spotify's U.S. entry

Most of the really interesting stuff from the D10 relating to Apple has come from the Tim Cook interview, but another interesting tidbit came from an interview with Spotify's Sean Parker and Daniel Ek. When asked if Apple had tried to stop Spotify from entering the U.S. market, Parker hesitantly answered:

There was some indication that that might have been happening. It's actually a very small industry in a lot of ways. It's certainly much smaller than it was 10, 12 years ago. It's a handful of guys who are really running this industry, and they tend to talk amongst each other about all this stuff. One of our core competencies (which is weird as a technology company) is our licensing and legal and negotiation framework. ... In that process you hear things - people send you e-mails. There is definitely a sense in which Apple was threatened by what we were doing, but realistically, what we're doing is still such a small part of their overall business. Even if their music store component of iTunes went away, it wouldn't be hugely significant to their bottom line.

Jobs had previously downplayed the value of subscription-based music services like Spotify, but it's hard to argue that there wouldn't be at least a little bit of overlap between markets of people who want to buy music a la carte, and those who want the all-you-can-hear buffet. Of course, Apple still gets a cut of subscriptions made through the App Store, and has been for Spotify ever since it hit iOS in 2009. More recently, Spotify launched a really nice iPad app.

It's hard to imagine Apple being remotely threatened by subscription services when those services rely on iOS devices to actually gain any traction. Spotify subscribers, do you still buy tracks on iTunes? iTunes shoppers, have you ever been tempted to sign up for Spotify or any other subscription-based music service?

Source: AllThingsD

Simon Sage

Editor-at-very-large at Mobile Nations, gamer, giant.

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Apple was apparently threatened by Spotify's U.S. entry

18 Comments

I agree. And the only thing they could do to differentiate from Spotify and the handful of others out there is to up the price to pay more royalties to artists so they can be included in Apples catalog. If I knew I could pay $15 / mo and get ANY song I wanted to, I would go to whoever offered that service.

"It's hard to imagine Apple being remotely threatened by subscription services when those services rely on iOS devices to actually gain any traction."
That's a terribly incorrect view of Spotify. They are on practically every OS out there including deep Facebook.com integration. iOS is merely another OS they support and their growth is in no way tied to any iOS device.

I think maybe you're taking the statement too literally. I'm sure the author is referring generally to all OS - but being an Apple orientated site use the ten iOS

I do take people for their words [you say it that way, I take it that way] but in this case I don't think he meant anything else.
Apple isn't concerned because Spotify depends on iOS? Absolutely not.
Maybe it is poorly worded. That is possible but if it reads how he wrote it he's utterly wrong, IMO.

I buy from iTunes and am a very very happy iTunes Match user. I see no need to pay for music from another service. If I want it, I'll get from iTunes and add it to my cloud storage via Match.

The problem I see with subscription based services is that. 10 a month that means you have download about 8 songs a month to get your moneys worth and even more to make it worth it. Then once you stop paying you lose all your right to the music. Now you have thrown that money way. I'll stick with Pandora and Slacker.
I wish apple would just go back to the 99cent format.

I shouldn't say download. Cue is more like it. I don't think there are that many song/albums a month worth it.

Not true.
Your playlists will always remain the way you set them up.
You only pay a subscription fee if you want to use your Spotify tracks/playlists on your mobile device. Even if you did cancel the monthly subscription, your desktop/laptop would still have all the songs you amassed.
I have free Spotify on my desktop, and nothing is lost or affected.

OF COUUUURSEE they will feel threaten!! any piece of the cake that is taked out of your plate hurts, even if its only crumbles, that said it's not surprise at all the Apple (or Jobs) answer to this topic. They do not have a service like this (I bet that eventually they will) so for now they are merely spectators of the other show, its like they are on the main stage of a music festival and they can see really far how the small/medium artist is performing, but obviously they will start to get mad if they start to see how their crowd slowly (but dangerously) move to the small stage on something that YOU used to be THE STAR with NO or really limited competition, the worst, you are starting to be left behind, but hey we are all on the "music business" right? So let's keep been friends (while it last), so better move your brains Apple guys and take out the "iTunesOnline" service or whatever you will call it (I bet it will have an 'i' LOL)

Re: iTunes shoppers, have you ever been tempted to sign up for Spotify or any other subscription-based music service?
No. Never. Probably never will.

Re: iTunes shoppers, have you ever been tempted to sign up for Spotify or any other subscription-based music service?
Yes. I did. And now that I pay for Spotify's premium service, I never purchase any songs through iTunes.

I wouldn't pay a monthly subscription, preferring instead to download my own music. I used to take advantage of the free service Spotify offer, however got irritated by max play limits etc. In my view monthly subscriptions for services such as Spotify are throwing money away

I used to buy almost entirely from iTunes or Amazon but have since stopped almost entirely. I just am bored with all the music in my own library. I don't feel like I need to own songs anymore because they are always a click or touch away some where on the internetz.
I have Sirius XM subscription now that I use all the time with the iPhone app or my in car radio. If only there was an app for my Lumia 900...
I also suplement with SoundCloud once in awhile.

Offtopic: Does anybody know what the brand and make are of those headphones next to the iPad featured in the picture?