The fact that all streaming music services present in the same country share the same price is no conspiracy: the music industry has very strict negotiations with streaming music catalogues, which makes it very difficult for those prices to go below the level of competition.
This news may shed some light on how these negotiations can work: the US Copyright Royalty Board has moved to increase by 44% the amount of money the artist receives for each use of his material (each reproduction of his songs). All major companies with streaming music catalogues have joined together to appeal against this increase… except Apple .
At AppleMusic download revenues on iTunes have dropped so much that they are now less than those for physical formats
The change would make Amazon, Spotify, Google, Pandora and the rest of the companies with musical subscriptions move from paying 10.5% to 15.1% to the artists . The appeal is served, because the Royalty Board has already assured that it will invest all the necessary resources to fight this appeal.
But at the same time, that same American copyright counsel appreciates that Apple ” accepts its decision ” and continues ” to be a friend to writers and artists “. We can take this in two ways: either Cupertino is taking longer to react to launch that appeal, or they simply agree with the change and prefer to support it so as to have better relations with the copyright holders in the United States.
This could lead, for example, to Apple having priority or advantage in future negotiations to distribute content via streaming. And knowing that the company is about to launch a range of new services, the gesture may have been smarter than we think.