Apple's New Music Service Price May Match Spotify (But No Unlimited Free Tier)

By James O Malley on at

Everyone is expecting Apple to announce a new music streaming service next week at the company's annual Worldwide Developers Conference - and now potential pricing details have emerged.

According to the Wall Street Journal, the service (which we expected to be Beats-branded) looks set to be around $10/month in the US - that's the same as Spotify and Tidal's lower tier costs over there, and it would position Apple in line with its rivals. We presume when it launches over here, Apple will opt for a £9.99 price point - continuing to match Spotify overseas.

What makes this more interesting is that the company apparently won't be offering an unlimited free listening tier like Spotify does, but will instead offer users who don't pay access to DJ-curated radio stations - with the likes of Dr Dre hosting shows. Suddenly Apple hiring Radio 1's Zane Lowe makes a lot more sense.

Annoyingly, Engadget also reports that Apple is apparently talking to artists include Taylor Swift about providing exclusive content for the new service - which if the rest of the industry follows suit, could prove disastrous to music fans who will be forced to subscribe to multiple services to get all of their tunes.

Still, it'll be interesting to see how Apple does - as streaming music is already a fairly mature market, and Spotify is a formidable opponent. But if anyone can beat it, it is going to be Apple. [WSJ via Engadget]