Apple expected to introduce 'iCloud' in June, if music publishers agree

Posted:
in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited January 2014
Music industry insiders expect that Apple wants to launch, or at least introduce, its anticipated "iCloud" music streaming service in June, though the company must also reach agreements with music publishers.



Music publishers own a different set of rights for which Apple must also strike a deal, according to Peter Kafka of MediaMemo. Apple is said to have started making deals with the labels first in its negotiation process, and only recently began talking with publishers.



How long it will take to reach an agreement with publishers remains to be seen. But Apple's launch of 90 second song previews in iTunes was reportedly held up for months last year because of negotiations with publishers.



Kafka also said that sources in the music industry believe that Apple wants to launch or at least announce its so-called "iCloud" service at its annual Worldwide Developers Conference, starting June 6 in San Francisco. This year's event is expected to focus on software, and it is not expected that Apple will unveil new iPhone hardware as it has done in years past.



"In Apple's case, I'm told that the company doesn't have any theological hurdles to clear with the publishers," Kafka wrote.



As for the music labels, Apple has been making headway, with deals already reached with Sony Corp., EMI Group, and Warner Music Group. Those agreements would allow users to access song collections from mobile devices via the Internet.



The lone holdout remains Universal Music Group, the largest recording company. But it has also been said that Apple and Universal are close to reaching an agreement.



The Internet-based service is expected to offer more than just music, serving up calendar events, contacts, e-mail and bookmarks. Apple recently acquired the "icloud.com" domain name, suggesting that the company's current cloud-based service, MobileMe, could be rebranded in the revamp.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 30
    asciiascii Posts: 5,685member
    I am not very excited about streaming music, I have a small collection of songs I listen to repeatedly, small enough for local storage.



    But I am interested in a cloud service. It should have email, small web server (just enough for a personal site), and some kind of backup capacity. I have a Time Capsule, but for some really important files (past electronic tax returns etc) I would like offsite backup. Syncing is a beautifully logical thing for the cloud to be used for, but I personally don't use that feature.



    Actually the existing MobileMe is just perfect for me, if only the iDisk was faster (for the backup role).
  • Reply 2 of 30
    quinneyquinney Posts: 2,503member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post




    "In Apple's case, I'm told that the company doesn't have any theological hurdles to clear with the publishers," Kafka wrote.




    Not theological? I guess that leaves pecuniary.
  • Reply 3 of 30
    sevenfeetsevenfeet Posts: 373member
    The major music publishers are ASCAP, BMI and SESAC. Here in Nashville, they are a regular fixture in the music/songwriting community. They aren't the easiest to deal with but because the labels are falling into line, perhaps they will see the opportunity and agree to a contract.
  • Reply 4 of 30
    imatthewimatthew Posts: 5member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Sevenfeet View Post


    The major music publishers are ASCAP, BMI and SESAC. Here in Nashville, they are a regular fixture in the music/songwriting community. They aren't the easiest to deal with but because the labels are falling into line, perhaps they will see the opportunity and agree to a contract.



    Actually, those three companies aren't music publishers, but rather PROs (performance right organizations) who collect monies for the publishers/songwriters when it comes to broadcasts or live performances (while companies like Harry Fox collect mechanicals). I'd imagine Apple would have to deal with publishing companies like Warner Chappell, UMPG, Sony/ATV, etc., right about now.



    Either way, I agree. With the label's pretty much in line, I think this eventually gets done.
  • Reply 5 of 30
    Hello there how are you, I think this is wonderful of Apple to introduce this .



    I'm the tea lady at Netvillage and I wish the little sods here would do this too.



    They do have some interesting community software though.



    Oh well, I better pop off then.



    Bye bye, the tea lady.
  • Reply 6 of 30
    jonamacjonamac Posts: 384member
    Am I alone in being utterly underwhelmed by this entire cloud music idea? I just do not think this is a big deal at all. This data centre must have a more grandiose purpose lined up for it surely! I just cannot see any great number of people paying a fee just to store their music online. With Flash memory getting cheaper and the 64GB smartphone around the corner, who needs this??



    Doesn't add up.
  • Reply 7 of 30
    We know that just because they registered "iCloud" doesn't mean they'll be using it -- it could be pre-emptive to keep cybersquatters from trying to grab it. But I certainly hope they don't. It not only sounds like a bad parody of their product nomenclature (hard to escape that, though), it just sounds plain stupid.



    That said, if they do end up using it, Apple's act could be seen as a company heroically falling on their own sword in order to save the world from any further use of the idiotic term, cloud.
  • Reply 8 of 30
    asciiascii Posts: 5,685member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ks2problema View Post


    That said, if they do end up using it, Apple's act could be seen as a company heroically falling on their own sword in order to save the world from any further use of the idiotic term, cloud.



    Sadly I don't think Apple will be the one to save you, just open System Preferences to see a little cloud icon in there.



    What name would you prefer? A more conventional name might be Server, or Internet Server, or just Internet.



    But I think they are trying to express the idea that wherever you are, your data is "just there" like it was in the air. Some other things that are in the air are birds, planes and Superman, so perhaps we got lucky with the choice of "cloud"
  • Reply 9 of 30
    orlandoorlando Posts: 601member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ascii View Post


    I am not very excited about streaming music, I have a small collection of songs I listen to repeatedly, small enough for local storage.



    Of course one advantage of a streaming system is for the songs you own that you don't listen to repeatedly. You are not wasting local space on songs these songs but you can still access them. Couple with this genius and you might rediscover songs you enjoy that you haven't listened to in a while.
  • Reply 10 of 30
    charlitunacharlituna Posts: 7,174member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ks2problema View Post


    We know that just because they registered "iCloud" doesn't mean they'll be using it -- it could be pre-emptive to keep cybersquatters from trying to grab it.



    Yep. For all we know icloud.com will just auto over to me.com



    As for the publishers, for all we know the preview hold up wasn't over previews at all. They could have also included this whole streaming issue and that was what was making the other side balk
  • Reply 11 of 30
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Orlando View Post


    Of course one advantage of a streaming system is for the songs you own that you don't listen to repeatedly. You are not wasting local space on songs these songs but you can still access them. Couple with this genius and you might rediscover songs you enjoy that you haven't listened to in a while.



    I?m imagining that your iTunes play history could easily be used to determine which songs to add or not add.



    Now I?m thinking of the iPod app setup much like your Contacts on the iPhone where you can choose a different group, but in this case it?s All, Local Only and iCloud Only.



    If you choose All they all show up and when you start to play a song not locally stored it polls iCloud for the rest of the track and will store that track on the device temporarily for a set duration just in case you play it again. After a pre-determined time frame will be cleared from the cache.
  • Reply 12 of 30
    I hope Robert Johnson, Stan Getz, and Bo Diddley get their money!!! Those shady record company types get my hair standin' up!
  • Reply 13 of 30
    jsyedinakjsyedinak Posts: 34member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Jonamac View Post


    Am I alone in being utterly underwhelmed by this entire cloud music idea? I just do not think this is a big deal at all. This data centre must have a more grandiose purpose lined up for it surely! I just cannot see any great number of people paying a fee just to store their music online. With Flash memory getting cheaper and the 64GB smartphone around the corner, who needs this??



    Doesn't add up.



    I've been thinking the same thing all along. I hope this is just a small part of a larger service. I would like some king of FREE cloud storage and email account. Would also be cool if there was space for hosting a small website.
  • Reply 14 of 30
    dick applebaumdick applebaum Posts: 12,433member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Jonamac View Post


    Am I alone in being utterly underwhelmed by this entire cloud music idea? I just do not think this is a big deal at all. This data centre must have a more grandiose purpose lined up for it surely! I just cannot see any great number of people paying a fee just to store their music online. With Flash memory getting cheaper and the 64GB smartphone around the corner, who needs this??



    Doesn't add up.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Jsyedinak View Post


    I've been thinking the same thing all along. I hope this is just a small part of a larger service. I would like some king of FREE cloud storage and email account. Would also be cool if there was space for hosting a small website.



    Streaming, segmented, non-iTunes-purchased-music is a concept everyone can get their mind around. For now, it allows Apple (and you) to bypass addressing how to validate your non-itunes music so Apple can stream from a single copy.



    Later, some method can be developed/negotiated to accommodate your entire music and video collection (amnesty, watermarks, etc.)



    But, think of the concept more broadly than storing song segments and streaming them to an iDevice;



    Rather, think of it as staging and reassembling files on demand -- from the Cloud to some local storage -- A big TimeMachine, where some of the bits (especially older bits) reside in the sky.
  • Reply 15 of 30
    pmzpmz Posts: 3,433member
    If it can't stream Apple Lossless in full quality, I'm not even remotely interested.
  • Reply 16 of 30
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by pmz View Post


    If it can't stream Apple Lossless in full quality, I'm not even remotely interested.



    Unless that's a joke that's an unrealistic expectation on many levels.
  • Reply 17 of 30
    dick applebaumdick applebaum Posts: 12,433member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by pmz View Post


    If it can't stream Apple Lossless in full quality, I'm not even remotely interested.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


    Unless that's a joke that's an unrealistic expectation on many levels.



    I wonder about that!



    According to the patent:



    Whoa! Apple Patent Confirms iTunes Cloud Media Services



    1) the source need not be the Cloud only -- it could be a home server, the cloud, both or many (like bit torrents).



    2) the streaming speed and amount of segmenting of files are settable



    3) the media is not limited to audio only



    You could have a dynamic system between the source(s) and destination, where they ahndshake and agree on an ad hoc setup for segmenting and streaming speeds -- then the destination device adjusts its buffering and reassembly algorithms accordingly.



    Ya' gets what ya' pay for!
  • Reply 18 of 30
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Dick Applebaum View Post


    I wonder about that!



    According to the patent:



    Whoa! Apple Patent Confirms iTunes Cloud Media Services



    1) the source need not be the Cloud only -- it could be a home server, the cloud, both or many (like bit torrents).



    2) the streaming speed and amount of segmenting of files are settable



    3) the media is not limited to audio only



    You could have a dynamic system between the source(s) and destination, where they ahndshake and agree on an ad hoc setup for segmenting and streaming speeds -- then the destination device adjusts its buffering and reassembly algorithms accordingly.



    Ya' gets what ya' pay for!



    That’s pretty much what I imagined in post 12. I think it’s a pretty complex setup, even for Apple, but also think if anyone can pull it off it’s Apple.



    I do wonder if we really need this or if it’s part of a much bigger plan future down the road the way Front Row was a test bed for the AppleTV OS UI.



    Personally, I listen to very few songs out of my collection and my iTunes history could easily tell me which ones those are so I can see how this could be the best of both worlds for such users.
  • Reply 19 of 30
    dick applebaumdick applebaum Posts: 12,433member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


    That’s pretty much what I imagined in post 12. I think it’s a pretty complex setup, even for Apple, but also think if anyone can pull it off it’s Apple.



    I do wonder if we really need this or if it’s part of a much bigger plan future down the road the way Front Row was a test bed for the AppleTV OS UI.



    Personally, I listen to very few songs out of my collection and my iTunes history could easily tell me which ones those are so I can see how this could be the best of both worlds for such users.



    I believe it is part of a much bigger plan -- iTunes streaming is just the first baby step -- Apple dipping its (and our) toes in the Cloud for non-critical media.



    Parts of the post-pc raison d'être are: mobility; UX; accessibility. The latter implies access to content. But, you can't take it [all] with you. The missing piece of the puzzle is the Cloud.



    Google and MS are ahead of Apple in many Cloud Services offerings.



    But, the Cloud is only one part of the total post-pc puzzle -- others being: integrated hardware/OS; apps; content; sales, marketing & distribution.



    It should be easier for Apple for to provide its missing Cloud pieces -- than for Google and MS to provide all the pieces they are missing.



    HP/Palm and RIM appear to be the only others that could provide a complete package to exploit the post-pc potential.



    Interesting that HPQ and RIMM have a combined market cap of $100 Billion (77+22) -- but I don't see MS or Google buying either of these.





    Edit: Depending on what they are doing, Amazon could be a dark horse for the post-pc era. They already have the Cloud, Marketing, Sales and distro chops. If they make their own hardware and OS (fork Android or Linux) they could be quite competitive -- no legacy baggage.
  • Reply 20 of 30
    If y'all expand the viewpoint's a bit ... I noticed that Apple is making big inroads with Enterprise... i.e. 66% growth rates just this year. iPads are being evaluated in nearly all business at some level ... thus the big server sites could just very well be for business to offset the huge cost of managing there own servers. I know there are security issue (plenty). With the advent of Thunderbolt, high speed data transfer is very attractive ... LTE is coming, and even dedicated private networks can be made available... just look at Western Union ... that is exactly what they do. We really don't know the fully capabilities of Lion, iOS and the like. Just some ideas. FWIW
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