Warner launches attack on streaming music

Chief executive at Warner Music, Edgar Bronfman Jr, has ruled out allowing Spotify to stream free music should the service migrate from Europe to the US.

Bronfman said the market for digital music still had much growing to do and predicted that iTunes' dominance would been be under threat, but he attacked streaming music services.

"Free streaming services are clearly not net positive for the industry and, as far as Warner Music is concerned, will not be licensed," he said in an analysts' call.

"The 'get all your music you want for free, and then maybe with a few bells and whistles we can move you to a premium price' strategy, is not the kind of approach to business that we will be supporting in the future," he rambled.

Bronfman sees greater potential in subscription-based mobile services. Spotify has more than seven million users in Europe, but only five per cent subscribe to its paid-for service.

This is where the market is wide open according to Bronfman: "There are a lot of people who see the extraordinary value that Apple has created. You're going to see a lot of people try to emulate that value. The subscription models that we are promoting will create much more value over time than the per-play or per-purchase models. The number of potential subscribers dwarves the number of people purchasing music on iTunes."