Beatles near iTunes deal, branded iPod possible

Posted:
in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited January 2014
Apple Computer is reported to be closing in on a deal that would at long last bring the Beatles music catalog online and to its iTunes music service.



According to Fortune magazine, the two parties have momentarily pushed aside their differences and are currently in talks over making iTunes the exclusive online music store for the English rock group, at least for a limited time.



Word of the talks come on the heels of comments by David Munns, head of EMI North America, who recently told an industry conference that the Beatles would be available online "soon."



To date, the Beatles remain the most prestigious and highly acclaimed musical talent without a digital download presence, turning down earlier bids from Apple's iTunes and rivals such as Microsoft Charts and Real's Rhapsody.



If the latest round of discussions do bear fruition, Fortune claims EMI would serve as a peacemaker between Apple chief executive Steve Jobs -- who is personally involved in the talks -- and Neil Aspinall, the Beatles business interests manager under its rubric Apple Corps.



"Also being discussed is whether the band would be willing to take two steps at the same time and endorse the iPod by allowing its music to be used in a commercial," the report states.



Another scenario reportedly up for discussion is the prospect of the Beatles following U2's example with a branded iPod. However, Fortune notes that the "deal could well fall apart for any number of reasons," including the ongoing legal spat between Apple Corps and the Cupertino, Calif.-based iPod maker.



In the latest bout, Apple Corps earlier this year argued in front of London's High Court that the introduction of iTunes broke a $26 million, 15-year-old settlement under which Apple agreed to steer clear of the music business, for which the Beatles? company retains the famous 'Apple' trademark.



In May, the court ruled in favor of Apple, saying its use of the Apple logo alongside the iTunes service was "fair and reasonable" and did not violate the 1991 agreement between the two companies. Apple Corps was ordered to foot Apple Computer's legal bill, estimated at £2m.



Apple Corps has appealed the case, in which a hearing is scheduled for next February.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 66
    This is definetly cool. i am not a beatles fan myself but i know enough that this would be a huge draw to itunes and ipod at just the right time.
  • Reply 2 of 66
    This would be pretty awesome. I can imagine a lot more people going for the Beatles iPod than the U2 one, but even getting their music online would be an impressive feat.
  • Reply 3 of 66
    dr. xdr. x Posts: 275member
    This is great news! I'm a Beatles fan and I've always wanted Apple to put the Beatles collection on the iTunes Store. I hope this deal goes through.
  • Reply 4 of 66
    So. Clean-cut 1960s Beatles? Or grungy 1970s Beatles?



    Maybe they can do the TV Guide route and have one for each. Even better, each Beatle gets an iPod. Buy all 4 kids!
  • Reply 5 of 66
    what is microsoft charts? another music service? i thought they had URGE, msn music, and zune marketplace.
  • Reply 6 of 66
    but getting back on subject, beatles catalog on itunes would be huge. maybe apple corps will get off apple computer's back once they start working together to make money, instead of suing again and again.



    apple computer should just have chosen another name. there are plenty of fruits
  • Reply 7 of 66
    Frankly, this is way too late. In the 5+ years this technology has been around, thousands, if not millions, like me have already downloaded on to their iTunes library pretty much all the Bealtes we need/want. (Speaking for myself, I will not download a single Beatles tune from iTMS.)



    That is the price of arrogance.
  • Reply 8 of 66
    Jeezzzz. A monkey could tell the difference between both Apple logos.
  • Reply 9 of 66
    rokrok Posts: 3,519member
    i have to agree that, if you are a beatles fan, you likely have many of their albums on CD, and by now, if you have an iPod, you've ripped them to your iPod already. And plus, haven't every single studio recording, rarity, etc. already been released as well? so who exactly is left who will buy these tracks?
  • Reply 10 of 66
    mactelmactel Posts: 1,275member
    I'm sure the Beatles would get a nice fat piece of each Beatle iPod sold. A little extra for hush money.
  • Reply 11 of 66
    Welllll... from my understanding there is supposedly a new Beatles album coming out that has caused quite a raucus.

    Talk about gaining even more marketshare if it were to make its debut on iTMS.
  • Reply 12 of 66
    ronnronn Posts: 424member
    From what I've read and seen (on a couple of entertainment shows), long-time producers are "cleaning up" and remixing the entire catalog. And I'm sure there'll be at least a couple "new" CDs to come. It's almost standard with long-time favs like the Beatles.



    I think there'll be tons of fans that will simply buy from the iTMS because they want everything by the Beatles. And like another poster already wrote, IF there is a special Beatles iPod, it will outsell U2 by lots. I don't see myself buying any of their stuff. Hell, I think I've bought only a handful of songs from the iTMS since its inception. There isn't one artist that I'd truly go out of my way to buy online. I live or work within ten minutes of used CD shops and get new material usually the same day is commercially available.
  • Reply 13 of 66
    ronnronn Posts: 424member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SoopaDrive


    Welllll... from my understanding there is supposedly a new Beatles album coming out that has caused quite a raucus.

    Talk about gaining even more marketshare if it were to make its debut on iTMS.



    I think you're referring to "Love," a CD of music for Cirque's show set to Beatles music. If I'm not mistaken, it came out last week (or was scheduled to anyway).
  • Reply 14 of 66
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ronn


    I think you're referring to "Love," a CD of music for Cirque's show set to Beatles music. If I'm not mistaken, it came out last week (or was scheduled to anyway).





    Yep, on the shelves as we speak!



    Still, a huge coup for Apple if they can get the Beatles to come onboard. And if they could get Sir Pauls endorsement on an iPod everyone else would just be sucking wind - and would show the world just how entrenched Apples market share is!
  • Reply 15 of 66
    if they simultaneously released a "complete collection" like they did for U2 it would pretty much be the greatest thing ever. If they release it with a simultaneous 6G widescreen pod with signitures on the back, i'll realize that i died in a plane crash on the way to san fran and that im in heaven.



    if i was microsoft this is the first thing i would have done, before even thinking of making mp3 player. Then i would have put some thought into making an mp3 player.
  • Reply 16 of 66
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by rok


    i have to agree that, if you are a beatles fan, you likely have many of their albums on CD, and by now, if you have an iPod, you've ripped them to your iPod already. And plus, haven't every single studio recording, rarity, etc. already been released as well? so who exactly is left who will buy these tracks?





    And that is why the Beatles are the most illegally downloaded band on the web if everyone already has the music???



    If you really want to hear something amazing. Listen to the new LOVE sondtrack loud on 5.1. Aside from a few "jup cuts" in my opinion, the music has NEVER sounded so good, so crisp so modern. With the iTunes thing and the entire remastered catalogue..wow.. But I will get the CDs and not download from iTunes. I want the 5.1 mixes.
  • Reply 17 of 66
    McCartney needs some more ££ for his divorce...
  • Reply 18 of 66
    So...



    1. Don't sell your music online, even when constantly courted by the most popular music-download service.

    2. Refuse to get free advertising, buzz, and guaranteed future sales that come with having a customized version of the most popular electronic product on the market.

    3. ???

    4. Profit!
  • Reply 19 of 66
    Worst case scenario he'll still be a billionaire after the settlement.

    I have no sad feelings for the man.
  • Reply 20 of 66
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bdkennedy1


    Jeezzzz. A monkey could tell the difference between both Apple logos.



    No, it's "even a moron in a hurry could tell the difference between the two companies." A great quote from the recent trial that Apple Computer v Apple Corps won.
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