The music industry and Apple are reported to be negotiating new pricing models
According to a report in the Financial Times Deutschland (FTD), leading music-industry groups are negotiating with Apple for a new business model for online sales of music. The report says consideration is being given to granting buyers of Apple products, such as the iPod or the iPhone, unrestricted access to the entire iTunes catalogue in return for a substantial surcharge. Additionally, a monthly music subscription for the iPhone is reported to be under discussion. Apple and the music industry have not yet reached an agreement about money. The FTD, quoting circles familiar with the negotiations, reports that Apple wants to pay the music-industry groups about $20 as a flat-rate payment for music.
Nokia is planning a similar offer, but according to the report will pay around $80. Buyers of Nokia mobiles would in future have access to a music catalogue for a year but, depending on their contract, they would incur costs for the download of data traffic. Nokia has so far reached an agreement with Universal and is seeking further partners.
Another variant currently being discussed, according to the FTD, is a monthly music subscription. For around seven or eight US dollars a month, clients would be able to listen to as much music as they wanted, but would only be able to store a limited number of songs at a time. This offer would only apply to the iPhone, because the fees could be charged via the telephone bill. Digital Rights Management (DRM) would be relied on to prevent music being listened to after the expiry of a subscription or the flat-rate payment.