Last month, The Wall Street Journal reported that Apple may be looking to create a radio streaming service to rival current services like Pandora in an attempt to protect its position as the world’s largest music dealer. Today, Bloomberg reports that Apple is hoping to close deals for an online music service in the next few weeks, targeting a launch for the first quarter of next year.
Apple Inc. and major music labels have intensified negotiations to start an advertising-supported Internet radio service by early next year, according to people with knowledge of the talks.
Talks are centered in part around how to share ad revenue and a deal could be reached by mid-November, with Apple starting a service within the first three months of 2013, said the people, who asked not to be named because discussions are still in progress.
According to the report, executives from Vivendi, Universal, Warner, and Sony have all visited Apple’s headquarters in recent weeks to learn more about Apple’s plans. An issue in the negotiations seems to be with the advertising, with Apple seeing the service as a way to strengthen its iAd offerings music labels want a share of that ad revenue and the ability to insert their own advertising into listeners’ streams.
Pandora’s shares took a 14% nose dive today over reports that Apple may launch an internet radio service and trading was halted.