Once again, just like clockwork, rumors are swirling around an alleged Apple "iRadio" subscription music service, similar to the likes of Pandora and Spotify. These rumors always seem to crop up right before an expected announcement period from Apple -- like spring, summer, or fall, and then disappear when music executives leak that they haven't come to terms on licensing agreements. Which brings us to the latest incarnation, according to the Verge:
Much has been written about Apple's plan to launch a Pandora-esque service this year. Now multiple music industry insiders have told The Verge that significant progress has been made in the talks with two of the top labels: Universal and Warner. One of the sources said "iRadio is coming. There's no doubt about it anymore." Apple is pushing hard for a summertime launch.
Streaming radio services have long been struggling to make a profit and manage revenue streams. According to the sources inside the industry, Apple is in talks with Warner and Universal on streaming agreements:
When and if iRadio happens, it'll be interesting to see how Apple implements it and how pricing would work. It probably isn't likely that record labels would negotiate free deals unless they're advertisement based, which Apple may not be a fan of. How much would you pay to have native streaming on your iOS devices and Apple TV? And how much content would Apple have to have to make you switch from your current streaming service?
Source: The Verge