Apple is reportedly working to close a $19 million deal to bring in Drake as DJ for a revamped version of iTunes Radio. The popular rapper might also perform some other roles, but extra duties have not been revealed as of now, says a report from The New York Times, which cites sources within the music Industry.
Apple to offer three-month free trial?
Also Drake is not the only one with whom Apple is in discussion; the iPhone maker may also be in talks with William Pharrell and David Guetta, but there was no revelation on the financial details of the deals.
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Drake and Pharrell were among the early adopters of the Apple Watch, as they were seen sporting the gadget even before it was released. Drake was seen with a yellow gold version at Coachella just a few days after Pharrell was seen wearing the same version on his TV show The Voice.
Also the report claims that the company will allow a free three-month trial for a separate subscription product which will be substantially related to Beats Music. The iPhone maker is not looking to gain licensing rights, and therefore, is requesting that music companies scrap fees for customer trials and is also requesting free copies of lyrics.
Preparing to compete with major services
Apple is looking to compete with Pandora, Spotify and YouTube by providing a combination of all these services, including streaming music, artists’ pages, a YouTube-style post-it yourself destination called Apple Connect, and a remodeled iTunes Radio.
News of Apple releasing an overhauled iTunes in addition to the launch of a new branded subscription service has been circulating for some time. Later, the news broke that the company has taken in Grammy-nominated DJ Zane Lowe from the BBC to supervise work on the renewed iTunes Radio effort. In April, yet another report stated that a few producers from Radio 1 were also hired by the Cupertino, Calif.-based company. Apple is largely expected to unveil the revamped iTunes Radio at the Worldwide Developers Conference.
The radio service was launched by Apple in 2013 to allow customers to tailor their radio stations to their likes and dislikes. U.S. users have been enjoying the service for almost a year now, but U.K. users are still waiting for the feature. Apple rolled out the service in Australia in 2014, but there is no word on launches in other countries.