Labels Team Up to Bruise iTunes

Universal leads effort against Apple's control of prices; new store part of plan
By Jonas Oransky,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 12, 2007 2:12 PM CDT
Apple's iTunes website is reflected in an iPod in London.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – Universal Music is acting on industry-wide anger toward iTunes’ policies, teaming with Sony and potentially Warner on a new subscription service that could make music essentially free. Still a prototype, Total Music would charge makers of music players $5 a month, PC World reports; they would then offer unlimited downloads with purchase of products like Microsoft's Zune.

The labels' iTunes laments start with the single price for all songs; they’d rather the store charge differently for old and new music. The CEO of Universal parent Vivendi also recently called Apple’s share of iTunes revenues “indecent," and the record company, which releases one of every three songs in the US, opted in July not to renew its contract with the store.