Tim Cook tells Apple employees Beats got subscription music right

Tim Cook tells Apple employees they bought Beats because they got subscription right

Apple's CEO, Tim Cook has reportedly followed up on the announcement of the Apple/Beats deal with a memo to employees that discusses Apple's deep history in music, Iovine's role in the early days of iTunes, and how Beats got subscription music right. Mark Gurman, reporting for 9to5Mac:

Beats Music was built with deep respect for both artists and fans. We think it's the first subscription service to really get it right. Both Apple and Beats believe that a great music service requires a strong editorial and curation team, and we will continue to expand what we do in those areas. The addition of Beats will make our incredible iTunes lineup even better, extending the emotional connection our customers have with music.

The memo apparently affirms that Iovine, Dre, and the Beats Music team will report to SVP of services, Eddy Cue, while the Beats speaker and headphone division with fall under SVP of worldwide marketing, Phil Schiller.

If you're using Beats Music now, does the acquisition change anything for you? If not, will it get you to reconsider giving it a try?

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Rene Ritchie

EiC of iMore, EP of Mobile Nations, Apple analyst, co-host of Debug, Iterate, Vector, Review, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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Reader comments

Tim Cook tells Apple employees Beats got subscription music right


i will give it a try once my new iPhone 5s gold gets here sold my space grey this should hold me over until iPhone 6 comes out. love the Beats deal can't wait to see what they do with hardware and software good deal apple.

Heard about the Beats streaming service a few months ago and I ignored it. With all the recent hype, I downloaded the app and started a free trial. I tried to like it. I wanted to like it. Deleted it after a few days. Spotify gives me the best streaming experience. To be competitive, Apple will have to improve upon the current Beats service. Kinda late in the game with so many others out there including Rdio, iHeartRadio, Pandora, LastFM, etc. Curation feature?...meh, it was not a selling feature for me. I tried it and it just did not impress me. As for Beats...not now...maybe later.

I've been a Spotify guy since 2011. I tried Beats when it rolled out an it was the worst. There was no iPad app and the streaming was hit or miss. After the 2.0 update, I tried it again, and I like it a lot. I'm slowly moving away from Spotify the more I use Beats as it has a great interface (it still needs work) and I love that you can have separate playlists and library as opposed to Spotify endless playlists. Now that Apple owns Beats, I hope they don't kill the service because I like it as is.

Apple couldn't get a music subscription service to work? This requires spending $3 billion? Then something's wrong at Apple, Tim. If Apple cannot make this work on your own and buying a nascent subscription service with Beats, versus a proven service like Spotify... it just doesn't make sense.

come on, we draw our knowledge from Apple blogs, news and rumours, who are we to criticise a deal of that magnitude. Pretty sure Apple have a damn good reason to do it, for instance; rumour has it Samsung approached Beats before Apple basically intervened. I would get that, I imagine Apple cringing at the thought of samsung owning a fashionable, popular American brand that not only has huge profit margins but also the means to establish an iTunes competitor... to me that alone would be a compelling reason to secure Beats.

They're buying because Beats Music has already negotiated and settled contracts for streaming and other licensing rights, and not to mention that Beats is a very recognizable, powerful (and profitable) brand.

I think Trent was only on board to help with concept. Not a founder of beats music. I may be wrong.

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Trent is the "Chief Creative Officer", according to the Beats entry in Wikipedia. I don't know how the acquisition by Apple will affect him. That's the key question here at least for me (and that Dre not be a douche, of course).

From Trent's Wikipedia entry:

"In January 2013, Trent Reznor, along with TopSpin Media founder Ian Rogers, were chosen to head Beats Electronics' new music subscription service, "Project Daisy", described by Beats co-founder Jimmy Iovine as having "hardware, brand, distribution partnerships, and artist relations to differentiate Daisy from the competition." The launch date for the Daisy service is slated for summer of 2013. There is some speculation as to what Reznor's role would be within the company, but he promises that he and the other members of "Daisy" strive to create a music subscription service that will be like "having your own guy when you go to the record store, who knows what you like but can also point you down some paths you wouldn't have necessarily encountered." Beats Electronics announced that their music service will be launched in late 2013, after getting $60 million in funding from investors. The service was officially unveiled in January 2014 as Beats Music, for a launch in the United States on January 21, 2014."

This announcement makes me seriously question Apple's future direction. I love the company, I love their products, but buying a company that has notoriously low-quality hardware and a failing streaming service seems like a huge mis-step.

Nobody is touching Spotify's free shuffle play on mobile. Maybe they can have Dre make some awesome ringtone beats. I haven't tried it, but Beats needs a free tier to attract new subscribers. I never would've tried Pandora or Spotify w/o it. Will Dre finally release Detox as an Apple exclusive?

Haven't tried Beats personally because I have just really been enjoying my Spotify premium subscription. I'm in my car for at least an hour a day and I'm not sure how I could get on without it at this point. I am willing to give Apple's new Beats-flavored service a try, whenever it launches.

Took the free trial. Thought it was the best i've used. But i got a back log of music i've bought that i haven't heard enough. I don't use any service.

Hands down Spotify App is much more mature. Beats is late to the game. I would be happy to see Beats mingle close with iOS and when it does I will give it a try. For now show me something cool is my take.

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Hands down Spotify App is much more mature. Beats is late to the game. I would be happy to see Beats mingle close with iOS and when it does I will give it a try. For now show me something cool is my take.

Sent from the iMore App