Apple sticks to $0.99 pricing for iTunes
Apple has renewed
deals with four major record labels—EMI, Sony BMG, Universal,
and Warner—to continue selling songs from the iTunes Music Store for
$0.99 a pop. The labels, which already make "about 70 cents" per 99-cent
music sale, had pressured
Apple for several months to charge more for new releases.
Warner Music Group's CEO Edgar Bronfman Jr. even suggested that Apple should
give record labels a share of revenues from its iPod sales. Apple CEO
Steve Jobs retorted by saying that the labels' profit margins were
already higher for iTunes song sales than for CDs, and that "if they
want to raise the prices, it just means they're getting a little
greedy." In addition to Apple's refusal to alter pricing, a recent antitrust probe into online music pricing may also have
contributed to the new agreements. However, Apple has not revealed how long the renewed deals are expected to last, so a move to non-uniform pricing may still be looming on the horizon.