Apple has won the class action law suit which could have resulted in the Cupertino company paying $1 billion.
The jury took only three hours to rule in favor of Apple. Consumers and retailers were looking for compensation as they claimed Apple abused their dominant position in the digital music space as they ensured iTunes music could only be played on the iPod and they also blocked other services with ongoing updates which Apple has said all along were simply updates to improve the iPod.
The jury agreed and also dismissed claims that the Apple strategy resulted in inflated prices for the iPod.
Apple said the following in a statement:
“We created iPod and iTunes to give our customers the world’s best way to listen to music,” Cupertino, California-based Apple said after today’s verdict. “Every time we’ve updated those products — and every Apple product over the years — we’ve done it to make the user experience even better.”
Spotify is going to release a new subscription called Spotify Family which gives up to five users access to the premium features of the music streaming service. The first user pays the regular fee of $9.99, every additional member will come at half price.
Spotify is the largest music streaming service in the world with 40 million users of which 10 million are paying premium customers.
The streaming market is extremely competitive; Amazon is offering free music streaming for prime customers and Apple is aggressively looking to gain traction in the market with Beats Music.
According to a recent article from Recode, Apple is looking to reduce the monthly fee for Beats Music from $10 to $5. Apple reportedly said that the best paying iTunes customers spends about $60 a year on music which is how they came up with the new price. Currently the company is talking to the music industry to see if they are able to reduce the fees in order for the new price to make sense.
According to various reports, Apple is set to buy Swell which is a personalized radio and podcast application. The Cupertino company is said to be being around $30 million for the company.
Companies such as Spotify and Pandora have made music streaming extremely popular and as a result digital downloads have declined, directly impacting Apple when it comes to revenue generated through iTunes.
With the Swell App you can listen to unlimited personalized radio, some of the stations available are iTunes, NPR, ABC, ESPN, BBC, TED and CBC. The app gets glowing reviews on the app store but as part of the deal it will be removed shortly as Apple will integrate features and possibly some of the design into their podcast.
This is of course nothing compared to the $3.2 billion Beats acquisition but it shows that Apple continues to invest in their music platform.