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Apple lands Universal for iCloud, gets 30% revenue cut again

updated 04:25 pm EDT, Thu June 2, 2011

Apple gets last iCloud music deal with Universal

Insiders slipped word Thursday afternoon that Apple had completed the last of the major deals it needed to fully license iCloud. The deal would have all four major labels onboard. At least "some" of their publisher partners have signed on as well, CNET understood.

Many of these deals would be last minute if completed on time.

For the first time, the explanation of the revenue model for iCloud songs has been uncovered. As Apple always insists on for its deals, whatever extra was paid into the deal by users would give Apple a 30 percent cut. The remaining majority would be split at 58 percent for the labels and 12 percent for the publishers.

Service wouldn't go live immediately after the WWDC keynote but would come "soon" based on the tip. Disappointing some users, the locker would only store music bought from iTunes at first, although plans supposedly exist to store any playable song at a later point. Both Amazon Cloud Player and Google Music Beta allow playing any format they can recognize or transcode, but they also need to be uploaded for streaming to work.

Apple's deal, even with its limitations, could still be a victory over Amazon and Google in getting deals neither of them managed. Amazon simply decided to launch in basic form and negotiate later, while Google declined to resolve its conflict and ended up dropping any near-term plans for a music store along with its more ambitious cloud music ideas.

by MacNN Staff



  1. worksafe

    Joined: Dec 1969


    ICloud might be Apples biggest mistake

    I'm not into wasting my bandwidth on downloading music or movies for that matter and then having to pay for it to boot to have it stored in some iCloud. First your paying your ISP for the bandwidth, then your paying Apple to purchase the iTunes and then paying them again to store it in iCloud, where as you buy a CD from a store, have ITunes move to your HD or SDD digitally and your finished with it. You cut Apple out of the price structure except for what your using on you computer.

  1. LunarMoon

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Something is cooking here

    Apple will not enter the cloud game to be one more. I think something is cooking here. Apple may be creating something more than just a regular storage system...

  1. SunSeeker

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Something cooking indeed...

    Apple currently make an iOs device which is designed for streaming content for $99
    their cheapest touch based device is $149
    their most fully featured iPod touch starts at $229 with most of the features of an iPhone
    These prices were possible a year ago - what's to stop Apple combining them into one new cloud based portable device with only 4GB on board, everything else in the cloud, thinner than an iPod Touch, as cheap as an Apple TV (with 2 year iCloud subscription), much safer and more secure than Android, Simless and independent of any phone contacts?

    Perhaps one purpose of iCloud is to allow Apple to sell iPhones for LESS than they cost to make

    Yes, something is cooking. It's everyone else's Goose

  1. ggirton

    Joined: Dec 1969


    It's a big moment.

    but we won't find out for another 6 months where it's really heading.

    What I'm saying is, this is the 'tick' -- just wait for the 'tock'!

  1. Peter Bonte

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Doesn't sound that good

    A purchased song should be free to re-download, therefore iCloud needs to be free for these songs. I can understand a small fee for other content and backup data but i don't trust the labels that much, this is very important for Apples future so i hope they negotiated a good deal.

  1. SockRolid

    Joined: Dec 1969


    See what you can do if you actually try?

    Apple does their due diligence, they negotiate with the labels, and they pay them for their content.

    Google shrieks "Yay! Open!", dumps beta software onto the market, and gets shut out of content deals.

    Then again, Google would have lost out to Apple anyway. Too much piracy in the droid weedpatch.

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