Apple is in high level talks to launch a Spotify-like streaming music service, according to sources. Apple is also seriously considering adding an iTunes app Android. The two projects are part of a broader strategy to offset declines in download sales even as revenues from streaming music are growing. Subscription service revenues were up 51% in 2013.
"They are feeling out some people at labels on thoughts about transitioning its customers from iTunes proper to a streaming service," a major label source told Billboard, who first reported Apple's plans. "So when you buy a song for $1.29, and you put it in your library, iTunes might send an e-mail pointing out that for a total of, say, $8 a month you can access that song plus all the music in the iTunes store."
While an iTunes streaming music service would appear a formidable competitor, Apple's music moves are not always winners. While iTunes Radio has found an audience, for example, Pandora continues to grow despite the new competition.