updated 08:36 am EDT, Mon June 10, 2013
Reports cover previous iMusic rumors, record company revenue split
There has been more speculation for what Apple will present at its Worldwide Developer Conference keynote address later today. Recent reports have allegedly confirmed previous rumors of iOS 7 design changes and the iRadio streaming music service, subjects that people already standing in line to attend the event are likely to learn about.
Both the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times believe that the Internet radio service will make a prominent appearance, with the service claimed to be supported by text and audio ads via iAd, along with the option to "buy" tracks playing at that time. Apple has already signed deals with a number of the larger music services, though it is still missing a deal with Sony/ATV, and due to the nature of music contracts, will mean that it will launch in the US initially, with a view to rolling out into other markets shortly afterwards.
NPD analyst Russ Crupnik, speaking to the New York Times, believed that while Pandora is "mainstream" with 200 million registered users, it is not a "dominant global player," with a similar service from Apple through the existing iTunes user base could end up netting it a much larger user base than Pandora, Spotify, and Rdio. Deals between Apple and the record companies apparently state that labels will get 50 percent of the advertising revenues for their songs, while publishers and songwriters will get 10 percent, according to report sources. This means record lables will be making it twice as much in ad revenues per track compared to Pandora and its Internet-radio rate, and is the opposite of the rates previously speculated in reports.
The Jony Ive-designed iOS 7 will apparently be "smoother and less ostentatious," with reports suggesting a less skeuomorphic design, something that has been mentioned previously. While a "flatter" design is not directly mentioned, "plain solid backgrounds and more white space" are claimed to be involved, according to report sources, along with "new ways to share photos and videos with other iPhone users."
The reports also mention a refresh to the company's MacBook lines, but without stating what the changes could be.