Apple sticks to $0.99 pricing for iTunes

— 1:43 AM on May 2, 2006

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.

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