The acquisition of Beats Electronics brought with it an audio hardware manufacturer and a music streaming service, and Apple has been working for most of the year on the relaunch of Beats Music, which is apparently coming to WWDC 2015 in June.
Apple’s annual developer conference provides the first look at the new iOS and OS X platform update, alongside any new services Cupertino intends to launch later in the year.
It would make sense for the relaunched Beats Music service to turn up at the event. Apple’s failure to win over the masses with iTunes Radio means it needs another route into music streaming, and Beats Music could be that route.
Apple is apparently siding with the music industry and will not offer an ad-supported tier for customers. This means to use Beats Music, users will need to pay $7.99 (£5.20) per month.
This is an undercut of $2 (£1.32) from the price for Spotify Premium and other music streaming services, potentially brought on by not supporting an ad service. Taylor Swift, Adele and other musicians are unhappy with the current ad-supported streaming model, as it loses them a lot of money.
The acquisition of Radio 1 DJ Zane Lowe also suggests Apple will offer radio stations on Beats Music. It could be a completely revamped version of the original iTunes, but instead of downloads everything is done through streaming.
Apple is also reportedly working on an internet TV service to compete with Sling TV and Netflix, featuring various channels from Disney and other cable channels, alongside original content for the service.
Beats Electronics was acquired last year for $3 billion (£1.98 billion), but Apple has for the most part left the two companies separate. Hopefully, in 2015, Apple will add Beats headphones for iPhones, iPads and MacBooks, to further push integration between the two companies.