Report: Apple plans iPhone, iPod music rentals | iLounge News

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Report: Apple plans iPhone, iPod music rentals

According to the Financial Times, Apple is currently negotiating with major music labels to offer an optional unlimited music rental service for iPods and iPhones, as well as an alternative subscription-based monthly service for iPhone users. Under the “comes with music” plan, the Times reports, premium versions of the iPod and iPhone would be bundled with “free access to its entire iTunes music library,” likely for the lifetime of the device, and enable consumers to “keep up to 40 or 50 tracks a year, which they would retain even if they changed their device or their subscription lapses.” A separate subscription plan would offer iPhone users monthly access to the iTunes music catalog for a recurring fee.

While Apple has not commented on the topic, and has previously dismissed the value of music subscription plans, “executives familiar with the negotiations” claim that the offering depends on Apple’s willingness to pay more than an initially offered total of $20 or so per device. Nokia has already planned a similar offering for its cell phones with a total payout of nearly $80 per phone.

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Comments

1

Until Apple can allow streaming of virtually every song ever recorded, these rental schemes will fail.

Posted by Galley in Greenville, SC on March 18, 2008 at 10:16 PM (CDT)

2

Yeah, no thanks, I mean, I’m interested in seeing what they come up with, but I’d really like to own my music, not rent it.

Posted by urbanslaughter on March 19, 2008 at 9:50 AM (CDT)

3

Didn’t Steve Jobs himself claim that customers want to BUY music and RENT movies?

Posted by The Doctor on March 19, 2008 at 9:57 AM (CDT)

4

I think the great majority of us who frequent the iLounge site prefer to own their music — myself included. But there are those out there who like to hear new stuff all the time and don’t actually purchase much music…this might be for them. It’s simply a niche product for Apple as they continue to fill in all the marketing gaps…

Posted by RNB in Bakersfield, CA on March 19, 2008 at 3:23 PM (CDT)

5

I have been waiting for years for Apple to offer this and the second they do I will gladly buy whatever top of the line Ipod Apple is selling.  I was once extremely hesitant about any sort of subscription service until I tried one five years ago and have never looked back.  Everyone I have ever referred to it who has taken the time to subscribe has been hooked for life.  I think there are two groups: people who are comfortable with a relatively static music library and people who are constantly looking for new music.  The latter group tends to consume music; they listen until they are bored and then move to something else.  For those of us like that, and there are a lot of us, it would cost us thousands of dollars a year to buy everything we wanted to try to listen to.  With a subscription service, it’s a minimal fixed cost and since I know I’ll constantly be wanting to discover more music, it’s one I’ll always pay.

Posted by Music Lover on March 19, 2008 at 3:31 PM (CDT)

6

I agree with MusicLover..after reading both sides of the argument. I buy all my music, but I also like to listen to different things all the time. I think that it would be a nice compromise to access all the music - listen to it - and then only buy the songs I actually really can’t live without. This may help me discover new things without the hard drive commitment. I think I would also choose this option and buy anything I find that I really love.

Posted by IngridG on March 19, 2008 at 4:27 PM (CDT)

7

I realy want to try"monthely music subscription service” on my 160GB ipod classic. Guess what, i will fill my ipod with 40’000 songs in days(WOW). It’s(monthely music subscription service) much better than buy 40’000 songs($40’000 toomuch) lol…...

Posted by KAUNI on March 19, 2008 at 10:57 PM (CDT)

8

Personally, I have no interest in renting my music. None. Music to me is art - there’s a value to actually owning it. Would I rent artwork? No. Then why would I rent music?

Music becomes a part of who you are. My music library is a physical (or digital) manifestation of my taste, my personality and my emotions. And the playlists I’ve made over the years are like an audio diary - I can listen to a mix I made in the 90’s and be instantly transported back to where I was at that time.

I understand the position of wanting to try new music before buying it. But I try that music BY buying it, namely through eMusic. Since I get 90 downloads per month, and those downloads get wasted if I don’t use them, I’m constantly searching around and downloading random artists just to try them out. Maybe that’s a model I could embrace with iTunes, but I won’t be embracing a rental program. In fact, I feel it tremendously waters-down the Apple brand.

Posted by thelottery on March 20, 2008 at 9:02 AM (CDT)

9

I had thought while watching some music videos on my Ipod while at the gym tonight. Would this unlimited service include music videos? That would be even more useful to me than just songs. I pretty much buy all my music now, BUT music videos would be awesome to have access to on a paid subscription, so I can swap out which ones to watch. They are expensive and are a huge commitment of hard drive space. I have too many external hard drives - ugh!

If they include Music Videos, people might embrace the monthly subscription more easily.

Posted by Nimbette2 on March 20, 2008 at 11:07 PM (CDT)

10

I can’t believe the resistance to the subscription model.  Are you kidding me?  For an extra 20 bucks, or even 80 bucks, you have the ability to sample the Itunes library for the life of your ipod—count me in!

You can always buy what you want permanently, but if the price is right, this is a no brainer.

emusic is great—until you run through their offerings, which are fairly limiting.  If this gets off the ground, it’ll be huge.

Posted by dmt1 on March 21, 2008 at 11:16 AM (CDT)

11

yea, how can this be a bad thing? For $20 you can rent all you want for life?  How exactly is this bad?

Although it’s another huge turn-around for Jobs.  Remember when he said Video on an Ipod was stupid, and he’d never do video.  Then releases Ipod Photo.  Then he said subscriptions were stupid, people wanted to OWN their music. Now of course this news.  Looks like Jobs just wants to dismiss everything not on the current model, then gets temporary amnesia and quickly adds it later on to a future version.

Posted by jj on March 22, 2008 at 10:49 AM (CDT)

12

Finally!  Having to rent music is here.  I think is great idea and this perhaps will cut back people from downloading illegal music.  I like to listen to different type of music and this will also give me a chance to broaden my horizon to listen different genre of music.  I hope this comes true.

Posted by Oliver on March 23, 2008 at 2:22 PM (CDT)

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