Stalled deal with publisher reportedly prevented Apple from launching online music service with iPhone 5

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Issue Date: 
Sep 28 2012 - 1:15pm

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The New York Post reported today Apple's inability to reach an agreement with music publisher Sony/ATV made it impossible to coincide the launch of its streaming music service with the release of the iPhone 5.

Sony/ATV is the world's largest music publisher (which means we're talking about song compositions, not sound recordings). A source told The Post Sony/ATV wanted a higher per-song fee to use its compositions than Apple was willing to pay.

What's more, the publishing giant reportedly plans to pull out of ASCAP and BMI after the first of the year. These two performance rights organizations negotiate rights with services that use song compositions for all their members. If Sony/ATV backs out of those groups, as EMI, which Sony/ATV is acquiring (don't confuse this deal with Universal's acquisition of the EMI Recording Group -- we're still talking music publishers here!) announced it would do, securing rights to use this music will become more complicated for webcasters.

"The Sony/ATV snafu means music streaming is more likely to appear as an iPhone update in future months," The Post's sources said.

Earlier this month it was reported that Apple was in negotiations with record labels to introduce streaming music "Pandora-competitor" service. 

According to CNet, "(music) publishers don't like Pandora's model... and don't want to see Apple launch a similar service."

Read The New York Post here; CNet here.


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