The base price for Apple Music is $9.99, with variants to choose from depending on certain factors. Other services out there offer a free tier, letting listeners skip paying anything in exchange for listening to some ads here and there. But it looks like Apple Music won’t be following that path.
As first reported by Musically (via iMore), Apple’s global Senior Director of Music Publishing, Elean Segal, spoke about a potential free tier for Apple Music. It was a short conversation, though, because it turns out there won’t be one. Segal shot down any possibility of a free tier with ads for Apple Music.
The conversation took place with British members of parliament for the United Kingdom’s Digital, Culture, Media, and Sport committee. Along with Segal, spokespersons for Amazon and Spotify were also on hand. Both of those services offer a free tier.
Along with ads, the free tier for most music streaming services comes with limited features, too. That includes a limited number of skips and more.
However, Segal’s reasoning for not adopting a free tier for Apple Music is different. Namely, the executive says that adopting a free tier for the music streaming service would go “against our fundamental values on privacy”, and said that tier would not generate enough revenue to “support a healthy ecosystem”.
Not that any of this should come as a surprise, of course. Having an ad-free listening experience has been a major focal point for Apple Music right out of the gate. And the company has never hinted at the possibility of this changing at some point in the future. If anything, Segal is shooting it down in a very definitive way here.
In fact, Apple Music doesn’t have tiers at all. However, that may change at some point in the future, but only with a more expensive option. This may be reaching a bit, but Apple Music doesn’t offer a hi-fi lossless streaming option right now, something that services like Amazon and Tidal do for slightly more money every month. And now Spotify is going to introduce the same feature for customers later this year, which will probably cost more than the standard $9.99 price tag (but we don’t know that).
So while Apple Music might not be introducing a free tier at all, that probably won’t stop the company from offering something else.
Do you think Apple Music should offer a free tier?