EXCLUSIVE Apple Takes Control Of Beats, OS PR Company Dumped New Streaming Service + Brand Makeover Comming
Currently is working on a Beats-powered streaming service to rival Spotify with the new service tipped to be rolled out in Australia in the second half of 2015.
Also set to disappear is the Beats signature red and black red with Apple designers currently working on new aesthetics for the popular headphone brand. Ingram Micro Australia will continue to distribute the brand in Australia.
The changes were made following a visit to Australia in December by senior Beats US management.
The as yet-unnamed Beats streaming service will be integrated into iOS, iTunes and Apple TV, including an overhaul of the existing Music iOS app, rather than the iOS roll-out anticipated, reports 9to5Mac.
The cloud streaming service will prioritise a user’s music library, integrating personal playlists and deploying a new search function for locating tracks within the iTunes/Beats catalogue.
Existing Beats Music accounts will be able to merge with iTunes or Apple ID accounts, though this only applies to US users as Beats Music is currently unavailable to the Australian market.
Apple purchased the music streaming service and headphones arm of Beats Electronics in May last year for US $3.2bn.
Ingram Micro staff have confirmed that a new “Apple influenced” Beats headphone and wireless speaker range will be launched in Australia this year.
The Beats Solo2 wireless headphones were launched in Australia in November, this was the first Beats headphones since the lucrative deal, but they were largely identical to their previously released non-wireless Solo2 counterparts.
Consumers are increasingly opting to pay for subscription services over downloading individual’s tracks or albums. Music subscription revenue increased 50 per cent to $1.1 billion in 2013, while downloads declined by 2 per cent in the same period.
Beats Music boasts around 250,000 paying customers in the US, while rival service Spotify has over 10 million subscribers worldwide.
The new service is expected to be less expensive than its current $9.99 per month price, with music industry sources claiming it will cost around $7.99.