Connect with us

Social

Apple’s just a ‘monopolist’: Spotify hits back over revenue split

Published

on

Apple has nobody to blame but itself for its bad year
TechRepublic’s Karen Roby talks with ZDNet’s Adrian Kingsley-Hughes to figure out exactly where Apple went wrong this year and what steps the company needs to take to try and recover.

Swedish music-streaming business Spotify has responded to Apple’s rebuttal to its complaint to the European competition regulator over Apple’s 30 percent “tax” on purchases and subscriptions through the App Store.  

Apple last week said, “Spotify wraps its financial motivations in misleading rhetoric about who we are” and accused the company of giving artists, musicians and songwriters measly fees. 

Spotify’s complaint centers on the revenue split with Apple, which it says would force it to “artificially inflate the price of our Premium membership well above the price of Apple Music.”

The streaming business also accused Apple of applying “technical and experience-limiting restrictions on Spotify”, including preventing it from sending emails to Apple customers, and locking Spotify out of Siri, HomePod, and Apple Watch. 

The complaint comes as Apple aims to beef up its services revenue, which hit a record $10.9bn last quarter as the company’s iPhone sales took a massive dive. 

Apple clarified in its blogpost that the only occasion it takes a cut on sales is for “digital goods and services that are purchased inside the app using our secure in-app purchase system”, which is 30 percent for the first year of annual subscription and 15 percent in the years after that.   

In Apple’s view, Spotify’s iOS app users are Apple customers, but Spotify contends that all its app users are its own customers.  

“Apple connects Spotify to our users. We provide the platform by which users download and update their app,” Apple said.  

SEE: IT pro’s guide to the evolution and impact of 5G technology (free PDF)

In a statement to Variety, Spotify said Apple’s response is what any monopolist would suggest, accusing the iPhone maker of harming consumers and competition. 

“Every monopolist will suggest they have done nothing wrong and will argue that they have the best interests of competitors and consumers at heart. In that way, Apple’s response to our complaint before the European Commission is not new and is entirely in line with our expectations,” said Spotify. 

“We filed our complaint because Apple’s actions hurt competition and consumers, and are in clear violation of the law. This is evident in Apple’s belief that Spotify’s users on iOS are Apple customers and not Spotify customers, which goes to the very heart of the issue with Apple.” 

Spotify asked readers to refer to its website for details and said: “We respect the process the European Commission must now undertake to conduct its review.”

Previous and related coverage

Apple on Spotify App Store complaint: It’s all about the money

Apple has accused Spotify of simply wanting to “make more money” off the backs of others.

Spotify files complaint in EU over Apple App Store: Why it may change developer economics

The drumbeat of opposition to the current mobile app revenue splits offered by Google and Apple is picking up. Spotify’s complaint in the European Commission versus Apple may alter developer economics. Apple counters that Spotify is looking for a free ride.

Why Apple’s streaming video service should lead to ‘Apple Prime’ subscription bundle

With Apple’s video service on the runway, the company has enough parts to create subscription bundles that rhyme with what Amazon offers. A little business model innovation could be in order.

Why Spotify’s IPO could bring more innovation to music technology TechRepublic

After the IPO in April, Jeff Yasuda, CEO of Feed.fm, talked with TechRepublic about why Spotify’s success is good for the business of music.

Spotify wants to build a podcast empire, starts by buying Gimlet and Anchor CNET

It’s not all talk.

Source link

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Social

China’s tech giants promise speculation-free NFTs – TechCrunch

Published

on

The future of non-fungible tokens is getting more clarity in China as the country’s tech giants come together to formulate standards for the nascent industry.

The China Cultural Industry Association, along with Tencent, Ant Group, Baidu, and others, jointly issued a “self-disciplined development proposal” for the “digital collectible industry,” a rebranded term for NFT in China to do away with the technology’s financial aspects.

While industry associations do not have regulatory power, they can be conducive to developing standards and best practices within an industry. The China Cultural Industry Association was founded with permission from the State Council and counts Alibaba and Tencent among its members, according to information on its website.

China’s NFT enthusiasts have been watching out for regulatory directions from the top. After China outlawed cryptocurrency trading, the speculation was that NFTs in their purest form — traded with cryptocurrencies on global, public blockchains, freely and anonymously — would not be allowed in the country.

That looks to be the case. In April, China’s financial associations proposed that NFTs must not be used for securitization or transacted in cryptocurrencies.

China’s NFT industry may be a step closer to regulation with the country’s largest platform operators taking a stance. Digital collectible platforms, according to the proposal issued by Tencent, Ant Group, and others, should hold relevant regulatory permits, ensure the security of underlying blockchain technologies, enforce user real-identity checks, step up intellectual property protection, resolutely ban financial speculations, and promote rational consumption among users.

Tech firms in China have been testing the waters before NFT regulations set in. Behemoths from Tencent, Ant Group to Baidu have all launched their digital collectible marketplaces built on private, consortium chains. Users can only make purchases with the Chinese fiat currency RMB, and secondary trading is widely prohibited to prevent price gouging.

One company decided to take its ambition beyond China to explore the full scope of NFTs. In April, Bilibili, China’s top user-generated video streaming site, commissioned a Singapore-based company to launch an Ethereum-based NFT collection inspired by the site’s brand assets.

Continue Reading

Social

Instagram tests ditching video posts in favor of Reels – TechCrunch

Published

on

Instagram is testing a change that turns video posts into Reels, the company confirmed to TechCrunch. The company says the change, which is currently being tested with select users around the world, is part of Instagram’s plan to simplify video on the app.

“We’re testing this feature as part of our efforts to simplify and improve the video experience on Instagram,” a spokesperson from Meta said in an email.

A screenshot posted on Twitter by social media consultant Matt Navarra shows that people who are part of the test will see an in-app message that says “video posts are now shared as Reels.”

The message indicates that if your account is public and you post a video that ends up being turned into a Reel, anyone can discover your Reel and use your original audio to create their own Reel. If your account is set to private, your Reel will only be visible to your followers. The message also notes that once you post a Reel, anyone can create a remix with your Reel if your account is public. However, you can prevent people from remixing your Reels in your account settings.

As with any other test, it’s unknown when or if Instagram plans to roll out the change more widely. If the change does become permanent, it may pose some challenges. For example, it could be difficult to post a horizontal video if it gets uploaded in a vertical Reels format. In addition, Instagram did not say how this change will affect current videos on Instagram.

The test comes as Meta has been betting big on Reels. As part of its Q1 2022 earnings, the company revealed that Reels now make up more than 20% of the time that people spend on Instagram. It’s not surprising that Instagram is looking to expand Reels even more by replacing video posts altogether. If the company does end up making this change permanent, it could boast about people spending even more time viewing Reels. 

Last year, Instagram head Adam Mosseri said the app was “no longer a photo-sharing app,” noting the company was prioritizing a shift into video amid significant competition from TikTok and YouTube. The company then took a step toward its larger goal of making video a more central part of the Instagram experience by combining IGTV’s long-form video and Instagram Feed videos into a new format simply called “Instagram Video.”

If Instagram decides to turn all video uploads into Reels, it would consolidate the company’s video elements even further. Last year, when Mosseri laid out Instagram’s priorities for 2022, he said the company would double down on video and focus on Reels. He even hinted that Instagram would consolidate all of its video products around Reels and continue to grow the short-form product, which indicates that this change may have always been the plan.

Continue Reading

Social

Crypto wants its own iPhone – TechCrunch

Published

on

Image Credits: TechCrunch

Apple’s relative hostility to the desires of crypto developers hasn’t gone unnoticed, and as the industry buckles down for a bear market, some of its proponents are pushing forward plans to rebuild the iPhone with their own industry’s best interests at heart.

Hello and welcome back to the Chain Reaction podcast, where we unpack and explain the latest crypto news, drama and trends, breaking it down block by block for the crypto curious.

This week, my co-host Anita was off, so I was joined by TC+ Senior Crypto Reporter Jacquie Melinek, who discussed some of the wild happenings in crypto, including FTX’s flirtations with Robinhood and the latest drama at Celsius.

We also talked about the big surprise announcement of the week: the Solana-backed Saga smartphone. The new device will operate with crypto capabilities baked into its silicon while serving as a regular Android-based smartphone as well. The device doesn’t ship until next year, allegedly, and Jacquie and I had plenty of thoughts, so listen along above!

Our guest: Doodles CEO Julian Holguin

This week, I chatted with Julian Holguin, who is the CEO of the NFT project Doodles. The collection of 10,000 NFT profile pictures is one of the most popular crypto projects on the web and Holguin just banked funding from Alexis Ohanian to push the startup behind the art even further.

Chain Reaction podcast episodes come out every Thursday at 12:00 p.m. PDT. Subscribe to us on Apple, Spotify or your alternative podcast platform of choice to keep up with us every week.

Continue Reading

Trending