Two new music-related Apple rumours to bring you today, one of which sounds significantly less far-fetched than the other.
The one to pay more heed to is 9 to 5 Mac’s claim that Apple is targeting its iOS 8.4 software update for the relaunch of streaming service Beats Music. As a reminder, current iPhones and iPads are on iOS 8.1.3, so this is three updates away.
“Sources say that the iOS 8.4 update will be released after the Apple Watch becomes available,” claims the report. “Sources also say that Apple is currently considering using iOS 8.4 as the iOS update that includes the upcoming Beats-based streaming music service.” The report backs up recent speculation that Apple may be planning to relaunch Beats in the summer rather than the spring.
Now the other rumour: a claim on industry gossip site Hits Daily Double that “iTunes is in the process of acquiring Scott Borchetta’s Big Machine in a deal valued at $250 million” with the deal including Taylor Swift’s catalogue and next album. A story so far-fetched that Apple broke with its standard policy of not commenting on rumours and speculation to “officially” deny this particular speculative rumour.
Apple as record label is a story that has popped up irregularly over the past decade or more of Music Ally covering the digital music space, but never with any fire for the smoke. Yes, we’ll have egg on our faces if Apple now buys Big Machine, but if the company does have a $250m stash to fling at music, it would be much more sensible to devote it to securing exclusives from a range of big artists. Taylor Swift included.