Wednesday, 16 October, 2019

Apple meeting resistance from music companies in quest for media super-bundle

Apple is reportedly considering bundling Apple TV+ and Apple Music Labels 'nervous' about Apple Music & TV+ subscription bundle plan - report
Adrian Cunningham | 09 October, 2019, 14:04

The report suggests that labels are anxious Apple could cut music streaming revenue, which could have a major impact on profitability.

Apple is set to launch its streaming video subscription service, Apple TV+, on November 1, with a competitive pricing of $4.99 per month.

Apple is now offering one year's subscription for free if you buy a new iPhone, iPad, or Apple TV.

Apple is reportedly eyeing the possibility of creating a "super-bundle" by combining Apple Music and its upcoming Apple TV+ service into a single monthly package for users. One big record company speaking to FT, in particular, said it had "concerns" about the plan, especially because only a decade ago, Apple "strong-armed" record labels into selling songs on iTunes for only $0.99 each.

Of course, if it came right down to it, Apple could offer a slightly discounted bundle - perhaps $13/month for both Apple TV+ and Apple Music - and take the hit entirely on the Apple TV+ side. Apple Music is US$9.99/month while Apple TV+ will be US$4.99/month.

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A super bundle that includes Apple Music, which costs $10 a month, and Apple TV+, which is expected to cost $5 a month to compete against rival services, will likely cost around $13 a month, the Financial Times noted. Video available to buy or rent will be mixed in with other movies and shows - including exclusive offerings through Apple TV Plus. It's also possible that Apple may tie some of this in with other services or bundles, such as AppleCare+ or the iPhone Upgrade Program.

When it comes to music, however, Apple is at the mercy of the record labels and whatever licensing agreements it can work out. If all of these were offered for a lower monthly fee then this could help Apple get more subscribers.

However, there is a catch - a catch 22 - if you drop the Apple subscription, you lose every piece of music you have acquired.

In the early days, iTunes was simply a great way to get music onto Apple's marquee product, the iPod music player.