Quick! Name the next big frontier for tech giants Apple and Google! If you said music subscription services like Pandora, Rdio and Spotify, you’d be right.
Both companies are rumored to have plans for a music subscription business. Google would launch a service through its YouTube division, and Apple executives have been in talks to partner with Beats Audio's recently announced Project Daisy service.
According to Reuters, Apple’s executive leader Tim Cook met with Beats CEO Jimmy Iovine during a trip to Los Angeles last month. During the meeting, which was also attended by Apple’s Internet product boss Eddy Cue, Cook shared interest in Beat’s project Daisy plans but did not discuss firm plans for a partnership.
Meanwhile CNN reported yesterday that Google’s rumored music solution could be released as a new feature within YouTube. The popular destination for user-submitted video already enjoys high visits for music videos and audio tracks. Convincing its users to embrace an official music subscription service might not be a hard sell.
For now, the rumors with firmer ground seem to be Apple’s partnership with Beats. The Verge reported yesterday that Beats received a $60 million investment from billionaire mogul Len Blavatnik, who also purchased Warner Music Group in 2011. Such a partnership would give Beats a substantial catalogue to launch a new streaming service. The company also acquired music subscription service MOG last year. Adding Apple as a partner could potentially distribute Daisy to hundreds of millions of iTunes users.