What does Apple have that Google doesn’t have? Deals with major record labels. According to CNET, Apple’s already signed a deal with EMI so it can stream music to a device nearest you.
The report also says deals with Universal Music Group and Sony Music are almost done. Well, well, Google. It looks like Apple’s stepping up its game for when its cloud streaming service does go live (even if it’s the last major player to do so) instead of launching a reduced product a la Google.
It would give Apple a major advantage because, if the rumors prove true, it will have signed contracts with all of the top four record companies. All of this ready to rock n’ roll before Apple’s WWDC conference traditionally held in San Francisco early June. Brava, Apple.
No one, though, seems to know when Apple’s supposed streaming service (possibly called iCloud) will be officially announced, never mind launched.
Because of these deals, analysts have pointed out that instead of uploading songs to Apple’s servers, it’s possible the service would just scan your hard drive and match your music files instantaneously to songs on the server (’cause there’s nothing like uploading a 20-gigabyte music collection).
The biggest question is whether Apple’s service would be free or have a free option like Google and Amazon. There’s been some question whether the cloud service would require a subscription, which would presumably help with licensing costs. But let’s face it, no one ever complained about anything being gratis.
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