Apple close to signing iRadio deals with major labels Universal and Warner

12 Apr 2013

Apple’s rumoured rival to Pandora – dubbed iRadio – is taking a step closer to becoming a reality if reports are to be believed about a deal that is close to being signed with Universal. Apple is also understood to be on the cusp of signing a major deal with Warner Music.

A month ago, we reported that negotiations between Apple and major music labels had ground to a halt, with the labels rebuffing Apple’s offer of six cents for every 100 songs streamed. The labels wanted 21 cents per 100 songs streamed.

It is understood that Spotify pays the labels 35 cents per 100 songs while terrestrial radio station iHeart pays typically 22 cents per 100 songs.

According to a report today on TechRadar, Apple is about to sign a deal with Universal Music Group as early as next week.

It is also nearing a deal with Warner Music.

With Universal and Warner under its belt, other labels will follow suit.

It will be interesting to see what Apple can do with a streaming music service and in terms of using it as a channel to sell songs from iTunes.

The development comes at an interesting time. Google this week expanded its Google Play Music service to five European countries, as well as New Zealand and Australia.

Social network Twitter is also believed to be preparing to unveil its own Twitter Music service this weekend during the Coachella music festival.

Digital music image via Shutterstock

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years