Thanks in part to Taylor Swift's rebuke, Apple is going to pay artists for music streamed during any Apple Music free trial period. But how much, exactly? Per the New York Times, the company is paying 0.2 cent per song streamed free, which may not sound like much but does put it on par with rates paid by Spotify and other services, according to music execs. Additionally, Apple will pay a lesser amount to music publishers for songwriting rights, which is still being negotiated with many of the publishers. Once users convert to a $10-a-month subscription plan, Apple's royalty rate for paid streams is 70% of revenue.
Many independent record companies agreed to the terms Tuesday night, after battling with Apple for weeks; some say Swift gets much of the credit for prompting Apple's about-face, while others disagree. "Over the last three weeks or so we and others have worked hard to (secure) a range of significant benefits, protections, and improvements on the originally proposed terms," says Adrian Pope, managing director of a British label, in a statement. "Despite what one might read, this was not entirely down to Taylor Swift." Apple Music launches Tuesday.